When I look back over my childhood, most of it is marked by competition. I was (am) a gymnast, I did theatre to be better than my cousin, I always had to get good grades. Competition was my everything. I loved it. I still do. I thrive under pressure and love competition and performing. But over the last year and a half, I've learned a different side of competition. It used to also be negative because I couldn't mess up. I had to be better and I had to win. Which don't get me wrong makes for a good athlete. But it also takes away the spark. And a fantastic student but you lose the love of learning. I went through years of hating reading and writing because it was never good enough. I was terrified to come back to gymnastics because I knew I couldn't compete as well. I had wasted all of my potential and had been reminded of it. I lost the competition. I had lost at life. The thing is though, if you don't view it as a win or lose situation the. It isn't so bad. Competing can bring out the best in you. It makes you work harder and helps you get up when you fall. I used to never want to try new skills unless I knew they lived up to standards because if the coach wasn't happy then I wasn't happy and it was a mess. It was a failure. A loss. But I've come to realize that losing can teach us a whole lot more than winning. It teaches us where to work from and how to improve. And most importantly it allows us to have fun. If nothing is more important than winning...then what do we do when we lose? Never stand up? Life needs to be more than a constant competition. Otherwise it isn't worth it.