Sports and Camaraderie
Bill Gates once said, “Some of the most exciting work that I’ve done in my career has been the work that I’ve done with Steve (Jobs) on the Macintosh.”
The best kind of competition is built not on hostility, but rivalries. Having that one person in your life pushes you to go further, to innovate in wilder ways than you ever could have gotten alone. They are the ones who motivate you to work harder, to test the limits of tradition, of safety, of sportsmanship. At its worst, it’s no better than the parties involved thinking that the other is the antagonist in their story. But at its best, it’s a meeting of minds that betters everyone who interacted with this phenomenon.
Bill Gates once said, “Some of the most exciting work that I’ve done in my career has been the work that I’ve done with Steve (Jobs) on the Macintosh.” It was his rivalry with Steve Jobs that made Apple and Microsoft go from companies living under the shadow of IBM to being the top technology companies in the world. All because one did not want to lose to the other.
Sport is a medium through which this spirit shines. When you’re in the middle of a match that’s lasted a long time, and every point means more than the last, it’s the rivalry that keeps you going. The excitement you feel while playing against someone of similar caliber in a match is something that you can’t replicate. They are the ones who help you find that one moment that makes a sport go from a pastime or a hobby to a passion. Whether it is rivalry among opposing teams or teammates, the need you feel to continuously surpass them and score is what leads you to evolve.
The dynamic of friendly competition among people is never isolated. The drive to improve tends to influence others around us, pushing them to do the same. No one wants to be left behind. When faced with such determination, even from a third-person point of view, a rivalry urges everyone involved to work harder, to evolve. Contrary to a one-and-done competition, it isn’t enough to surpass your limits against a long term competitor. You have to put in work and raise them higher.
The bonds and relationships that we create with others end up being the catalysts to our growth. When we have someone who consistently competes with us, it forces us to improve and evolve, never letting us be satisfied with just “good enough”. Rivalries tend to be the relationships that we remember the most. The competition, camaraderie, compassion and force of will that makes up a rivalry ignites something in us. That special something that urges us to go beyond; that tells us that dedication, drive and a little talent is more than enough to reach our goals; that helps us see the view from the summit.