Image of two coworkers collaborating.

Embracing Collaboration vs. Competition

Updated March 23, 2022 . AmFam Team

We all come from different backgrounds, want different things and work towards different goals. But no matter what, we all have one thing in common — the desire for success.

And achieving what we set out to accomplish takes a certain mindset, one that makes it hard not to compare and compete with others. Because, whether you’ll admit it or not, we all want to be the very best at something — and that means one-upping those around us. So, it’s only natural to take on a competitive nature as we go about pursuing our goals.

But is that really the best approach? Achieving a dream takes hard work, and leaning on others throughout your journey could only help. So, if you struggle with an unwavering competitive spirit, it may be time to shift your mindset. Here are some tips to help you work towards a lifestyle of collaboration. You’ll be surprised at the positive difference it makes!

Count on colleagues. One of the most common environments for competition is the workplace, because many of us dream of climbing our career ladder, and accomplished colleagues can be seen as a threat. But that’s a silly way of thinking! Instead of wasting time and energy comparing yourself to a coworker, find ways to work together and learn from one another. You’ll likely discover they’ve got a different perspective and combining your minds will lead to a better, more holistic outcome on a project. Plus, by building collaborative relationships, if you decide to pursue other opportunities, you have ready references!

Pool resources with like-minded dreamers. Do you dream of writing a book but have a friend who’s also an aspiring author? You may feel that you’re in some kind of race and whoever achieves success first is the winner. But, newsflash, you can both win! Pool together your resources, bounce ideas off of each other and turn to one another when you’re stuck on a project — because a friend with similar talents and interests is an amazing resource to have.

Offer up your strengths. It takes a wide range of skills to achieve a dream, but we can’t be good at everything. If you see a friend, family member or colleague struggling with something, offer to help them out and put your strengths to work! Playing a role in someone else’s success is a great feeling.

Seek out support. On the flip side, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Opening a business but don’t know how to advertise? Turn to a buddy with marketing experience to help get you started. Want to cook a four-course meal for your family but don’t know much about the baking/dessert portion? See if a friend can pop over to give you a quick pie-making tutorial. Leaning on others to help boost your skills isn’t anything to be ashamed of. In fact, it’ll help you accomplish your greatest dreams that much faster!

Nix the jealous vibes. Seeing a friend or family member succeed should be a proud moment, but it’s not always that simple. The journey to achieving a dream is long and difficult at times, and it’s completely normal to be jealous of others’ success. But do your best to get beyond that and turn those jealous vibes into motivation! The best thing you can do is learn from others.

So, no matter what your goal, take these steps to avoid the competition and opt for collaboration. Because once you shift your time and energy to truly focusing on your dreams rather than comparing yourself to others, you’ll be on the fast-track to achieving success. What are you waiting for? It’s time for teamwork!

Want more tips and motivation? Join the dream movement today — we’ve got just the resources to help support and guide you and your family along any dream pursuit.

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