Let’s start with a question.
From the 7.5 billion people on this planet how many share your dreams and are thus pursuing similar goals?
In a connected world those people are your competition.
Consider the goal of becoming a famous actor in blockbuster movies. The competition will be fierce. It will either push you to practice more or crush your spirit.
Now consider the goal of losing weight. There doesn’t seem to be any competition here. If your friend loses weight it doesn’t shrink the total amount of weight loss available to all people with that goal.
When working towards goals where competition is abundant – you must promote yourself by taking a step forward each day. If you fail to promote yourself; you demote yourself. This gives your competitors room to overtake you. I encourage you to be paranoid about this.
Where there is no external competition you still get to make a choice. In the spirit of promotion you can choose to proceed. You can decide that you in competition with yourself – then find a way to do it faster, better and smarter.
You can also choose to concede.
One my favourite quotes comes from Abraham Maslow:
“In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety”