Competitions are one of the major essences of the human experience, as they usually determine who is the best at a given game or ability. Competitions create new plateaus for people to reach for when simply practicing alone is not enough. Although getting a win in a competition is far from everything, achieving a victory does mark growth and advancement. Competitions come in all forms and vary greatly, but there are general tenets you should follow to increase your chances of winning a competition, regardless of its nature.
Having a strong mental constitution is one of the most crucial factors involved in successfully participating in and winning a competition. If your mental guard is easily broken by taunting from opponents or tense situations, your performance will deteriorate, and you won’t be operating at your maximum potential. Compartmentalizing your thoughts helps to fixate your focus on the competition, and allows you to disregard any outside interference in the form of jeering or trash-talk. If you can’t keep your mind in the competition, then you won’t be able to keep yourself in it for long, either.
The easiest way to increase your chances of winning competitions is to participate in them frequently; even if you lose, it gives you the needed practice to perform well in tense situations. If you don’t compete regularly, you will be more susceptible to nervousness. As you participate in more and more competitions and start to place higher in them, you will get used to competing in a non-casual environment and be less susceptible to nervousness or surprises naturally found in competitions. Enter smaller competitions before participating in the big ones; this will also contribute to familiarizing yourself with the principles of competition.
Knowing your opponent is a key fundamental when participating in competitions. If you have intimate knowledge of an opponent’s weaknesses, habits and skill level, you will be able to exploit this knowledge and capitalize on it during competition. Take any opportunity to learn more about your opponent, as long as it remains within the rules and parameters of the competition. Talking to people who have previously competed against your opponent is one of the easiest ways to learn more about them. It’s also helpful to search for any footage available of your opponents. If you obtain this footage, then study their performance scrupulously while keeping an eye out for anything you can fairly use to your advantage.
Establishing a personal goal when involved in a competition is the most important way to motivate yourself to win. If you have no goal, then you have nothing to reach for, which will diminish your will to win, especially in situations where the odds are stacked high against you. Claiming the prize for winning the competition is a simple goal to set for yourself. If the prize is monetary, you can visualize how the money won will change your life. Setting a more personal goal for yourself is often a bigger motivator, such as proving your skill to someone or besting a hated rival in the final stages of the competition. Whatever your goal is, make it the metaphorical light at the end of your tunnel, and don’t stop striving until you reach it.