To some parents, "competition" is a confusing word. Not only does it place too much pressure on kids to be their best, they argue, but it can also cause unnecessary stress and leave children feeling disappointed if they don't measure up. To shield kids from disappointment, many well-meaning parents either declare everyone a winner or avoid competitive situations altogether.
But is a shelf full of participation trophies really the answer? Not necessarily. Child development experts point out that a little healthy competition can be good for kids of any age. Besides setting them up for wins and losses later in life—hey, they won't always land that big promotion—competitive activities help them develop important skills they'll use well into adulthood, like taking turns, , and tenacity.
"Competition helps kids learn that it is not always the best or the brightest who are successful, but rather those that work hard and stick with it," , children who engage in competition "earn critical social skills through interacting with other children, while also learning the value of hard work and developing self-esteem and self-efficacy." The key is to ensure the atmosphere promotes constructive competition. The meaning of healthy competition should be explained to kids well ahead so that they can face the competitions of life with ease. It is not always easy for kids to accept all competitions in a healthy manner or communicate with elders about the same, so we can keep a note of how they react to competitive situations.
If a kid is involved in healthy competition, he may ask to participate in the activity again, be able to win and lose gracefully, learn new skills and want to better themselves, enjoy improved self-esteem.
If a kid is involved in unhealthy competition, he may show signs of depression, anxiety, difficulty sleeping, or loss of appetite—all red flags that warrant further discussion. "Most competitive children experience some anxiety before a big game (or test), but they should not be constantly worried to the extent that it is affecting other areas of their life. He may deny to participate in such competitions further .But this can be dealt with , if kids are put into competition in the early stages like in the primary classes may be class 1 or class2. They will get accustomed to competitions but without any pressure. The Olympiads are the best academic competition that primary kids can participate. These are talent search exams for school students of class 1 to class 12. So, students of primary classes can appear in these exams and get sufficient practice of healthy competition that will help them in their higher classes also. The Eduheal Foundation holds Olympiad exams in basic school subjects like Math, Science, English, G.K, Computer etc for students of primary classes also. These Olympiad exams are the first step to competition for students of primary classes and slowly they get to know the benefits of competition. This helps the students to mentally prepare themselves for future competitive exams. EHF awards scholarships to the successful students that all the more encourage the students to face competition with a confident attitude.
Through competitions students can gain better understanding of how to deal with conflicting opinions and ideas. They can learn how to collaborate with widely differing personalities. They can learn to manage subjectivity in their lives, and they can learn to better gauge and evaluate risks.
Competitiveness has different types. The first one is probably what many of us think of when we hear the word – it’s the tendency to compete with someone else. You may compete with classmates or among work colleagues for how good you are.
The second one is a little bit less obvious – it’s the tendency to compete with yourself. You compete with your grades from the last term. You compete with your presentation skills from last year. Your focus is on you, and no one else. This version of competition can be healthy, as long as it doesn’t drive perfectionism, or make you stressed.
Try to see your personal development and progress in the longer term rather than in comparing what you did ‘this’ time compared to ‘last’ time. You may think “I studied more for the exam this time but did better last time” or “I prepared so much for this job interview, but it went even worse than last time.” But think about how you did, compared to, say, last year? How about comparing your skills or knowledge to before you started at your school, college, university, or workplace? How are you doing? Chances are that you have improved! Focus on the positives. Thus competition is a part of life but the most important thing is how it should be dealt with. Positive approach is sure to lead to success in all spheres of life.