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A Need To Win ? #FridayReflections

I’m not someone with a need to win. I’ve written about my non-competitive outlook before. Now, I’m not saying that this is necessarily a good thing. No, there are certain areas in my life that I should work on more and be more pushy about.

But today’s post is really not about me.

It’s about people who want to win at any cost.

There’s this guy I know who has such a need to win that he doesn’t mind stamping over everyone that gets in the way of what he wants. So old people, young people (even harmless puppies) are thrown by the wayside (not literally, but almost) while he pursues what he wants, even if it’s something petty. There’s a Latin phrase that describes such behaviour. It goes Inter arma enim silent legēs  which is popularly rendered as “in times of war, the law falls silent.

Pretty hard to relate to someone like that. You never know when you’ll be thrown under the bus.

Then there’s this woman. A brownie point scorer extraordinaire. At first, I thought she didn’t realize what she was doing. But then I began to see that this was such a part of her nature, so though not necessarily deliberate, her actions were harmful all the same.

Sample this. She brings an aged couple to a party. Four hours later, the couple looks all set to go home. You offer to drop them home, but Ms Brownie Point, insists she brought them, so she’ll take them back. You later find out that they had to find their way home on their own because Brownie and her husband (incidentally, the guy I described before) decided to stay on late.  Who were the winners in this case? I have no clue.

Together this seemingly charming couple, can be rude, mean and selfish without even realizing it. Whatever they buy is supposedly the best. Any decision they make is unparalleled in wisdom. And best of all, they’re never wrong, just misguided (by some poor soul now thrown under the bus!).

I could go on. But I’ll stop here to share this with you and hope that you’ll share your thoughts with me.

When an archer is shooting for nothing he has all his skill. If he shoots for a brass buckle he is already nervous. If he shoots for a prize of gold he goes blind or sees two targets— he is out of his mind!

His skill has not changed. But the prize divides him. He cares. He thinks more of winning than of shooting— and the need to win drains him of power.

~Thomas Merton, The Way of Chuang Tzu


It’s Friday today and although Sanchie Vee and I had decided to take a break from #FridayReflections through April, I decided to it slightly differently. I’m putting up a linky – and asking you to write on any of the older prompts that you may have liked and missed. I’ll have the same linky up all month through, just on fresh posts. Also, I’m asking for a link back to my blog in your post to prevent people who are writing ‘off prompt’ from adding their links.

If you want to know more about #FridayReflections and find prompts to write on, I’ve created a page with the ‘rules’ and the prompts. So go ahead and have a ball. Remember, to link up here so we can all enjoy your writing.

This post is in response to the prompt from 2 December 2016:  Write about something or someone you can’t get over.

Also linking into Finish The Sentence Friday.

Image of ‘successful’ man via Shutterstock


  1. I read this already – I know I did! 😀
    I am definitely not a win at all costs person. I fear offending others too much, I think. Competitiveness can be a healthy thing, to a point. But when taken too far, it can be a detriment to all around us.


    Oh when I read that line for the brownie scorer woman, I thought I knew who you were talking about cos there seemed to be one particular online connect we share who is a pro at it and in such a sweet guiling way – uff!!! Now my hackles are raised!!!
    I abhor this sickly sweetness which is exuded to get some work done or to make them look good ; but in reality there is no substance to their claims or actions!

    Very well written and I loved reading it Corinne

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 30, 2017

      No, Shalini, it’s no one you know, but I’m now ever so curious! 😉
      And yes, I know what you mean about having no substance.

  3. Lisa @ TheGoldenSpoons Lisa @ TheGoldenSpoons April 29, 2017

    Competitiveness can be an asset or a detriment – depending on how we choose to use it and how far we decide to take it.

  4. Fabida Abdulla Fabida Abdulla April 29, 2017

    Pretty inconsiderate people! But there are many who view this extreme competitiveness as a positive attribute, and then it becomes hard to draw the line between being competitive and outright selfish.

  5. Debbie D. Debbie D. April 29, 2017

    Selfish and inconsiderate people abound in this world, unfortunately. You’ve written about two glaring examples. These are people to avoid as much as possible. Competitiveness isn’t in my nature either.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 29, 2017

      For a while after I published this, I wondered if I was being mean too, Debbie. But having read the comments, I realize that it does resonate with others too.

  6. Alana Alana April 29, 2017

    I have a relative like that. It sounds like we all do. We all have to live with the toxicity. The only positive about the situation is that she is in and out of our lives and the “out” parts give us a breather. You did get me thinking about if I am competitive. I would initially say “no” but, if I think about it more, I am, in some ways. Hopefully not in toxic ways.

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | April 29, 2017

      Like you said, I think we all have some connections like these. I’ve learned to distance myself, Alana.
      Being competitive is great, I wish I was just a little more that way.

  7. Menaka Bharathi Menaka Bharathi April 29, 2017

    Love the way you have used your words here Corinne, I know exactly this type of people and I feel really amused seeing the extent they go to prove their point, without realising they are posing to the same audience again and again.

  8. Shirley Corder Shirley Corder April 29, 2017

    Yes Corinne, people like that make life difficult. I had a relative who was so well-liked by people on the fringe. She would do anything for anyone. But she always had the best, achieved the best, cooked the best, was loved the best . . . to such a degree that she was toxic to spend a lot of time in her presence.

  9. Kristi Campbell Kristi Campbell April 29, 2017

    Oh wow. Those people sound absolutely AWFUL! I have known others like them… and it’s never easy to first, figure out how toxic they are and second, to remove yourself so slowly. I think we tend to give people the benefit of the doubt, and so when they do something gross at a party or wherever, it’s easy to make excuses like “they must have gotten caught up,” or similar. But there are definitely times when it’s consistent and then time to move on!

  10. Ramya Ramya April 28, 2017

    I could completely relate to what you say Corinne. There was one friend of mine who is very good except when she is competing with someone. Iam sure she will be ready to move world upside down if she decides to win at any cost. I also remember her for het jealous nature. I think, jealousy comes when we cannot let others win or vice versa.

  11. Anne Louise Bannon Anne Louise Bannon April 28, 2017

    It’s tough dealing with people like this. Worse yet, our culture seems to encourage this kind of behavior to the point that I fall prey to thinking there’s something wrong with me because I don’t or am not… whatever.

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