Embracing Self-Competition and Aiming for Success



Sep 04, 2023 • 3 min read


Embracing Self-Competition and Aiming for Success


In a world that often glorifies external competition, a shift in mindset is needed to truly excel and find fulfillment. Rather than comparing ourselves to others, it is important to focus on our own growth and progress. By embracing self-competition and prioritizing the process over the end result, we can unlock our true potential and find success. This article explores the concept of self-competition and the philosophy of aiming, offering insights and actionable advice to help individuals thrive.

Competing with Yourself:

External competition can often lead to unnecessary stress and a sense of inadequacy. When we constantly compare ourselves to others, we are bound by their standards and achievements, limiting our own potential. Instead, we should view competition as a means to surpass our past selves. By setting ambitious and exciting goals, we create a framework for personal growth and development. Our past self becomes our competitor, and our future self becomes the hero we aspire to become. This mindset shift allows us to focus on our own journey and define our own success.

The Philosophy of Aiming:

Kyūdō, the Japanese martial art of archery, offers a unique perspective on success. In this practice, the process of aiming holds greater significance than hitting the target. By redirecting our focus from the end goal to the way we approach it, we can find fulfillment in the journey itself. Thomas Fuller's words, "A good archer is not known by their arrows but by their aim," encapsulate the essence of this philosophy. Success is not solely measured by achieving a specific outcome but by the way we navigate and enjoy the process.

Embracing the Process:

When we shift our focus to the process rather than fixating on the end result, we create a daily life that is fulfilling and meaningful. By immersing ourselves in the present moment and paying attention to the details, we can find joy in every step of our journey. Whether we reach the hypothetical finish line or not becomes inconsequential, as the process itself becomes the source of satisfaction. This mindset allows us to appreciate the progress we make each day and fuels our motivation to continue growing.

Actionable Advice:

  • 1. Set Ambitious and Exciting Goals: Instead of comparing yourself to others, set goals that challenge and excite you. By focusing on your own growth, you can unleash your true potential and surpass your past achievements.
  • 2. Embrace the Process: Shift your mindset from the end result to the daily journey. Find joy in each step and pay attention to the details. By immersing yourself in the present, you can derive fulfillment from the process itself.
  • 3. Redefine Success: Success should not be solely measured by external accomplishments. Define your own version of success based on personal growth, fulfillment, and the enjoyment of the journey. Embrace the process of aiming rather than fixating on hitting the target.


By embracing self-competition and prioritizing the process, we can unlock our true potential and find fulfillment. External competition often leads to unnecessary stress and limits our growth. Instead, by competing with our past selves and focusing on our aims rather than end goals, we can design a life that is fulfilling and meaningful. Let go of the need to compare and define success on your own terms. Set ambitious goals, embrace the process, and find joy in every step of your journey. Remember, success is not solely measured by the outcome, but by the way we approach and enjoy the process itself.


  1. "Self-competition: only compete with your past self", https://nesslabs.com/self-competition (Glasp)
  2. "Everything is Aiming", https://nesslabs.com/everything-is-aiming (Glasp)

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