Low self esteem + being extremely competetive = any correlation?

Tunn3lVision

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I was talking to someone about this, and his argument was that people with low self esteem tend to have a lot to prove, and so they're really competetive.

I, personally, dont agree with this. I'm competetive and I dont have low self esteem.

what do you guys think?
 

xylem29

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I think that the sweeping generalization that your friend made is wrong.

There are competitive people who have low-self esteem for sure, but these people are not any more likely to be competitive than those who have high self-esteem. Just my ignorant thoughts though - anyone read any psychology papers on this? I'm sure there are some out there. Who knows, maybe you friend is right - but I don't think so, not at the moment anyway.
 
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gujuDoc

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I was talking to someone about this, and his argument was that people with low self esteem tend to have a lot to prove, and so they're really competetive.

I, personally, dont agree with this. I'm competetive and I dont have low self esteem.

what do you guys think?

Competitive is not synonymous with low self esteem unless you are talking about the malicious gunners who will do things at other people's expense.
 

maestro1625

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Competitive is not synonymous with low self esteem unless you are talking about the malicious gunners who will do things at other people's expense.

yeah, I think the wording is wrong there... but there are a lot of people who act with chips on their shoulders from a perceived lack of respect.
 

notdeadyet

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Do you have to beat out the next guy to feel good about yourself? You have low self esteem.

Do you constantly try to do better than you've done before? You don't have low self esteem.

See the distinction? People driven to be competitive because they feel they have something to prove by definition have low self esteem, but there's nothing wrong with pushing yourself.
 

GoLAClippers

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I, personally, dont agree with this. I'm competetive and I dont have low self esteem.

ALL
women have low self-esteem whether or not they would like to admit. There are more % of women in law and med schools these days. Hmm, does this answer your Q? ;)
 

TleilaxuMD

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Do you have to beat out the next guy to feel good about yourself? You have low self esteem.

Do you contantly try to do better than you've done before? You don't have low self esteem.

See the distinction? People driven to be competitive because they feel they have something to prove by definition have low self esteem, but there's nothing wrong with pushing yourself.
I never contantly do anything.......but I do conStantly do things....:D
 

stixx

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Do you have to beat out the next guy to feel good about yourself? You have low self esteem.

Do you contantly try to do better than you've done before? You don't have low self esteem.

See the distinction? People driven to be competitive because they feel they have something to prove by definition have low self esteem, but there's nothing wrong with pushing yourself.
Wouldn't that be because you're unhappy with your current performance? and isn't that exactly what low self esteem is? :confused:

And almost everyone who claims that they don't compare themselves to others is lying anyway...
 
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MirrorTodd

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In a largely "general" sense, self-esteem varies a great deal from person to person and day to day. I can't see a person with consistent, low self-esteem having the willpower to stand up and bring it on, in a manner of speaking.
 

GoLAClippers

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In a largely "general" sense, self-esteem varies a great deal from person to person and day to day. I can't see a person with consistent, low self-esteem having the willpower to stand up and bring it on, in a manner of speaking.

You didn't think I was serious with that comment, or did you? :laugh:
 

HumbleMD

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I'm a pretty centered/secure person but not competetive at all (only with myself). It seems like these are very tought words to define, and the thread in its attempt at arithmetic makes no sense whatsoever.
 

Tired Pigeon

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It's important to me to try to achieve my personal best -- I guess this makes me competitive. But, I am really happy for my friends when they succeed, so my competitiveness is not about wanting to 'beat' somebody else. So what does this mean for my "self esteem"? ;)
 

notdeadyet

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Wouldn't that be because you're unhappy with your current performance? and isn't that exactly what low self esteem is? :confused:
Only if you are unhappy with your current performance because it pale's compared to someone else's
And almost everyone who claims that they don't compare themselves to others is lying anyway...
Comparing yourself ot others is a healthy reflex. Making this comparison the basis for how you live your life is not.
 

turkleton

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If this were the case all medical students would be labeled low self esteem. As would all athletes. Pretty much anyone with a desire to be successful. Personality traits/labels are a hazy area but to me, roughly competitiveness is more reflective of personal ambition... perhaps the OP was referring to the hyper agressive, have to take others down for to succeed type of student? Then yea, maybe low self esteem, but more insecurity.
 

Stroganoff

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I think it's easier to understand if you divide competitive people into "good competitive" and "bad competitive." Your friend is talking about the ruthless bad competitive bunch whose lives are empty inside and feel miserable and need to compensate by plowing a destructive, selfish, arrogant path through other people in order to fill the painful void that lies within themselves. The good competitive people, I believe, are just overachievers who just wanna be successful and make the most out of life and opportunity, but not necessarily at other people's expense. I think people in the "good competitive" subgroup are more willing to humble themselves (e.g. not develop an egotistical mentality) and help their fellow classmates and people around them. These people are more positive and awesome to be around, because not only do they set the benchmark high for themselves, but they want you to join them and succeed just as much, because there's plenty of room at the top. The bad competitive people are just plain douches with meaningless lives.
 

TleilaxuMD

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I am not competitive at all. In order for there to be a competetion(sp) someone else needs to be in the same league as me.......no one thus far can accomplish things at such a high level.....
 
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baylormed

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To answer the original question:

I don't think you can make a generalization either way. Some competitive people (both good competitive and bad competitive) are that way because they are confident, maybe a little bit to much. On the other hands, there are others that are competitive (good or bad) because they have low self-esteem.

So I don't think you can generalize any group by any extent.
 

EmbellisMaVie

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double penetration?

"double post"

Points for creativity, though.

As for the issue of low self-esteem and being competitive, I think some people, including the OP, aren't differentiating between being competitive in a healthy way and being extremely competitive in an unhealthy way. In addition, there are so many permutations for degree of competitiveness and level of self-esteem, and I think you can find examples and explanations for all of them. Perhaps among people with extremely low self-esteem, there might be a guy who's not competitive at all because he thinks he can't compete, but another guy may be highly competitive in an attempt compensate for his own perceived deficiencies. By the same token, for people with extremely high self-esteem, on might not be competitive because he's so secure in himself, while another is overly competitive because he wants to show himself off. The possibilities are endless. This doesn't necessarily mean that self-esteem and competitivenes aren't related, but I don't think they're related in any consistent, predictable way.

Also, I have to agree totally with GoLAClippers about the women and self-esteem issues comment. For most, it's insecurity about their bodies. If it's not their bodies, then it's how they're perceived by other people in terms of personality/intelligence/skill. I have never met a woman who was completely secure in every aspect of her life, but I have met a couple guys who are. They're rare, but they do exist (and, for the most part, are as annoying as hell). But hey, maybe it's just me and the people I've met.
 

xylem29

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"double post"

Points for creativity, though.

As for the issue of low self-esteem and being competitive, I think some people, including the OP, aren't differentiating between being competitive in a healthy way and being extremely competitive in an unhealthy way. In addition, there are so many permutations for degree of competitiveness and level of self-esteem, and I think you can find examples and explanations for all of them. Perhaps among people with extremely low self-esteem, there might be a guy who's not competitive at all because he thinks he can't compete, but another guy may be highly competitive in an attempt compensate for his own perceived deficiencies. By the same token, for people with extremely high self-esteem, on might not be competitive because he's so secure in himself, while another is overly competitive because he wants to show himself off. The possibilities are endless. This doesn't necessarily mean that self-esteem and competitivenes aren't related, but I don't think they're related in any consistent, predictable way.

Also, I have to agree totally with GoLAClippers about the women and self-esteem issues comment. For most, it's insecurity about their bodies. If it's not their bodies, then it's how they're perceived by other people in terms of personality/intelligence/skill. I have never met a woman who was completely secure in every aspect of her life, but I have met a couple guys who are. They're rare, but they do exist (and, for the most part, are as annoying as hell). But hey, maybe it's just me and the people I've met.

Can you tell me with 100% certainty that they were completely secure in every aspect of their lives? Unless you "were" these guys yourself, I don't see how anyone can ever deduce that someone else is completely secure. Even if they tell you that they are, I doubt they are being honest - I don't think that it is possible to ever to completely content with everything in your life, otherwise, there's almost no point in living.

And trust me, guys are insecure about as many things as girls are.
 

EmbellisMaVie

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Can you tell me with 100% certainty that they were completely secure in every aspect of their lives? Unless you "were" these guys yourself, I don't see how anyone can ever deduce that someone else is completely secure. Even if they tell you that they are, I doubt they are being honest - I don't think that it is possible to ever to completely content with everything in your life, otherwise, there's almost no point in living.

And trust me, guys are insecure about as many things as girls are.

Alright, alright, so maybe I shouldn't have made that sort of statement implying such certainty. I won't debate that guys can be quite insecure in a number of different aspects. Perhaps it's better to say that I've met a couple of guys who seem quite secure in nearly every aspect of their lives.

However, there is a difference between being content and being secure. I think people can be secure about aspects of themselves, but still strive for better.
 

Davjc2009

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Alright, alright, so maybe I shouldn't have made that sort of statement implying such certainty. I won't debate that guys can be quite insecure in a number of different aspects. Perhaps it's better to say that I've met a couple of guys who seem quite secure in nearly every aspect of their lives.

However, there is a difference between being content and being secure. I think people can be secure about aspects of themselves, but still strive for better.


Girls are GENERALLY more upfront with their securities constantly trying to gain approval by others. (Does this make me look fat?)

While guys GENERALLY hide their insecurities by promoting how secure/great they are. (I have a 10 inch....you get the point)
 

gary5

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Self esteem and competitiveness are independent. People each have a different degree of each. If I could choose, I'd choose competitive with a positive self-esteem.
 

kdburton

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I was talking to someone about this, and his argument was that people with low self esteem tend to have a lot to prove, and so they're really competetive.

I, personally, dont agree with this. I'm competetive and I dont have low self esteem.

what do you guys think?

Wrong. This may be right for people who are competitive and brag about their grades, etc. Since nobody on here knows who I am I can say (setting my normal modesty aside) that I am very competive and I generally do a lot better than my classmates. None of them would even know about it though unless they got ahold of a test/transcript though, so I obviously am not trying to prove anything.
 

ocdmd

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This is only marginally related to topic, but sometimes its hard to really gauge how strong your sense (or anyone else's for that matter) of self esteem is if you've never faced personal adversity or had your perceptions of yourself challenged. It's easy to be confident in yourself if things usually work out for the best, which seems to be the case for most successful premeds. Not to say they didn't have stress or anxiety, but most never had to face the reality that they weren't a top student or weren't cut out for med school. Things like that can really blow a few holes in your confidence. I guess a lot of us will find out how secure we really are when we get to med school and become average. I know a few people who were literally in tears after their first exam because they barely got the mean. Prior to that, they, and anyone else who knew them, would have probably told you they were secure and confident in themselves.
 

NervousNed

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Michael Jordan was extremely competitive....i really dont think he had low self esteem...
 

gujuDoc

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Wrong. This may be right for people who are competitive and brag about their grades, etc. Since nobody on here knows who I am I can say (setting my normal modesty aside) that I am very competive and I generally do a lot better than my classmates. None of them would even know about it though unless they got ahold of a test/transcript though, so I obviously am not trying to prove anything.

Yeah I think the only people who are low self esteem kind of people are the ones who define competitive by doing one or more of the above:

1. lying about their scores by saying its higher then it really is rather then just politely saying they don't wish to discuss it.
2. Going out of their way to screw over other students by acting in a malicious gunner sort of way.
3. Being very braggart about things without people asking you about your information. Its one thing if people ask but its another when you voluntary go around telling everyone and their mother about your status to make others feel worse about their status.

I don't think that being competitive necessarily means that you are one or more of the above 3 factors mentioned above.


P.S. In regards to point number 3, I don't mean those people who post their mdapps like some have suggested is a means of bragging. I mean the people in your real life who get in your face to show off or those people who act like trolls on here like one of the posts in the official score thread or other trolls who've been on here in the past.
 

Neelesh

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I'm competitive and I'm arrogrant as f*ck.
 

Kfire326

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So i'm tryin to figure out this gunner thing. Would that (^) be a gunneresque comment?
 
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