A heart-warming photograph circulated the Internet recently. It pictured Meghan Vogel, a high school junior, stopping and helping a fallen teammate cross the finish line of their 3,200-meter foot race. Beautiful image. Lovely sentiment. Pure baloney.
According to a survey of 1000 adults by Shine and Fitness magazine, most people are a lot less altruistic than the young Ohio track star. When it comes to work, intelligence, athletic ability and even hobbies most men and women fiercely want to beat out their competition, even it that means besting a friend.
Life is just a game
About 80% of adults acknowledge that they are at least somewhat competitive. Young men (ages 18-34) are the most cutthroat over all-64% say they are "very" or "extremely" competitive. Even at play they want to be the best-about 49% of guys say they are competitive about their hobbies (vs. 38% of women). Don't think that women aren't in it to win it, though.
Smartest gal/guy in the room
When it comes to intelligence-the number one issue people say they feel competitive about-women are bigger strivers than men with 53% reporting that they want to be first in the smarts department, opposed to 44% for the guys. The same goes for athletic ability. Forty-two percent of women and 39% of men say that kicking butt at the gym or on the sports field is what really fires up their competitive juices. Money is another common issue that people report being "most" competitive about (31%).
While not at the top of the list, vanity engenders rivalry as well. When it comes to looks, 23% of respondents say they feel competitive about their appearance, with young women (33%) being the most driven to win at the beauty game. Thirty-one percent of women also feel competitive about their weight and only 21% of men.
You know that saying "keep your friends close and your enemies closer?" Maybe switch that around. One of the survey's most surprising findings is that people are actually more cutthroat with their buddies than other peers. Forty-seven percent of folks say their biggest rivals are their friends, followed by siblings (44%), and co-workers (43%).
Having a great career really brings out the fierceness in friends. Ninety percent of those surveyed say they would bring it on if they were up for the same job as their best friend, although most women say they would duke it out in a "low key way."
Although work brings out the fighter in both women and men, when it comes to getting credit on the job, women are three times more likely than men to tell their boss if they were getting unwarranted praise for work they didn't do.
Despite the all the competition, both sexes move on after being beaten. About 50% of adults say they might feel disappointed after a loss, but are able to take it in stride.
What are you most competitive about? Please let us know in the comments below
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