chess pieces on board

Although the outcomes of competitions can be rewarding, they are ultimately detrimental to competitors due to the amount of stress caused by trying to be superior to their opponents. Competition is personally arduous because it is not only unhealthy mentally, but also physically, as the desire to be the best often takes precedence over caring for one’s body (DiMenichi and Tricomi).

High school students are tasked with the ultimate challenge, trying to achieve sufficient grades while maintaining a social life filled with extracurricular activities. All of this puts enough stress on adolescents as it is, but when parents compare their children, internal competition is established. In my family, there is an ongoing competition among me and my sister, and that derives from the success that my parents expect from us.

I know that my parents’ expectations are well intended, and the results of my competitive nature show academically; however, the amount of stress I am put under is unhealthy, not only to my mind but consequently to my body. There is a price to pay for the glory of competition, and it is extremely taxing to one’s overall health.

There is a direct relationship between mental health and physical health, especially in high school students (Unhealthy and Healthy Competition). When burdened by internal competition, the effects of stress on my body are maximized due to an excessive amount of focus on school and a lack of social interactions, and a disregard for daily necessities (Unhealthy and Healthy Competitions).

I stay up late doing homework and consistently skip meals. Physical health is the most important aspect of a person’s life, and it should not be neglected at the expense of competition. Though stress is a consequence of competition, it ultimately encourages growth in an individual and leads to the betterment of society.

Works Cited 

DiMenichi, Brynne C., and Elizabeth Tricomi. “Increases in Brain Activity during Social Competition Predict Decreases in Working Memory Performance and Later Recall.” Wiley Online Library, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, 13 Sept. 2016, onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/hbm.23396.

Taylor, Glenn. “Unhealthy and Healthy Competition – What’s the Difference?” Skybound Coaching & Training, 10 Nov. 2020, goskybound.com/unhealthy-and-healthy-competition/. #RHS

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October 19, 2021 7:56 pm

Peyton, as I was reading your blog I was really able to process the amount of people (especially high schoolers) affected by competition. I felt a sense of relief just by how you explained comparisons which has helped me to understand that I am not the only one. One specific part of your blog that stood out to me was, “I know that my parents’ expectations are well intended, and the results of my competitive nature show academically; however, the amount of stress I am put under is unhealthy, not only to my mind but consequently to my body.” because it brought me to a realization that what I have been listening to is right but sometimes it is not always the healthiest choice for myself personally. I believe that one thing you could improve on is your concluding paragraph. It was very well written but I think you could be able to add a stronger starting sentence and finish it on from there. Other than that, this blog was incredible and eye opening especially for a high schooler.

Thank you!

kamila
kamila
January 23, 2021 4:31 am

Peyton, your blog was very interesting. I think you did a very good job at displaying the amount of stress that us as high schools encounter. We experience competition in most aspects of our lives wether we realize it or not. We are put under a lot of pressure to always perform well and be the best at everything we do. This stress and competition puts our minds and bodies through a lot of pain because of it. But this does give us the opportunity to become stronger in the future. Overall I think that you did a very good job.

Brooke
December 10, 2020 1:51 am

Dear Peyton,

I am very intrigued by your post because, as someone who experiences competition daily in my life, I feel as though your points are extremely valid and should be spoken about more often. Competition is often seen as something positive that promotes growth, but it can often be detrimental to the health of the youth.

One thing you said that stands out to me is that “high school students are tasked with the ultimate challenge, trying to achieve sufficient grades while maintaining a social life filled with extracurricular activities” because I feel as though people, especially students or people in the workforce, are held to such high standards that they fail to enjoy the task at hand, whether it be learning or working. I think this sad because people are forced to complete things that they fail to enjoy simply because they are overwhelmed with the high expectations set for them.

Your post actually reminds me of my own experiences. My parents often compare me to my sisters and others around me. They push me to be my best, and, while I’m grateful for this, I am often overwhelmed by the amount of effort I feel as though I have to put in. This causes me to try to be perfect at most things, resulting in stress.

Thank you for your post, and I look forward to reading what you write next because I feel as though you consistently focus on topics that are relevant to the times and need to be thoroughly considered.

December 9, 2020 5:14 am

Dear Peyton,

I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post “Competition”. It was fascinating to understand that having a competitive nature can be a beneficial or determinantal impact on a person’s health. I liked how you explained this as “Unhealthy and Healthy Competitions” hence depending upon how severe and what someone is being competitive about can evidently cause a negative or positive impact.

I”ve also had this endless competition with my brother and as an athlete participating in team sports for my school. I’ve always wanted to outshine my peers around me, including my brother. I would cause myself to be stressed out if I wasn’t outdoing those around me. Except by having this mental mindset would develop consequences and unhealthy competitions, as you mentioned “for the glory of the competition”. It’s important to be aware of these unhealthy and healthy competitions as a desire of being the best. I enjoyed reading this post, and I look forward to seeing what you will write next.

December 8, 2020 2:28 am

Peyton, This was a very interesting and compelling read. It really added to the content that you used personal examples. The connections from your personal examples to the point(s) that you made really made your message clear to the reader. I also enjoyed the topic choice and thought that your writing on it was concise and thought-provoking.

December 8, 2020 12:16 am

It’s Crazy to think that trying to be the best, at something can Cause stress, which can lead to great strain on your body. Although it may seem friendly, it can be challenging, and break relationships. I appreciate how you do your work, and state that your parents expect the same from both you, and your sister due to their expectations.

Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

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