Minerva's Breakdown: Tapped Out 

"Competitive people are stressful."

TAPPED OUT

DEAR MINERVA,

I have recently started having anxiety about everything in my life. It seems like everything is some sort of horrible sport. From work to home to my relationship, it feels like everyone is trying to compare what they have to what I have and they go out of their way to one-up me at every turn. It is zapping my energy and it is causing me to look at everything in my life in a negative way. How can I enjoy what I have again?

-Sincerely, Tapped Out

DEAR TAPPED,

Competition destroys joy. Competition destroys creativity. Competition is so often incredibly toxic. True, some people may thrive on competing and for them, it may be a rush. For many of us, however, we are interested more in enjoying our lives and the fruits of our labor. When things become competitive and we are focused on "keeping up with the Joneses," we no longer look at what we have with gratitude. Instead we focus on how to show off and upgrade. What I do to combat the competition that so many people thrust upon the unwilling, is to think about how far I've come and what has personally satisfied me. Every time it reminds me what is really important and it has never been showing off to others. I encourage you to practice disconnecting from competitive talk and interaction. Just change the subject or leave the convo. Your own sense of self-worth and accomplishment will flourish. When you realize you are already winning every day, what other people do makes no difference.

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