Why are some people so competitive

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Competitiveness and testosterone

Some behaviors cannot be explained in the light of simple seasons for usually more than one reason can come together to result in such behaviours. Competitiveness is one of the psychological traits that can be caused by more than one different factors.

For example males by nature are highly competitive as a result of the hormone testosterone which fuels such behaviour. But does this mean that each competitive male has higher testosterone levels?

No, that's not 100% correct. While a male with higher testosterone levels should be more competitive than a male with lower levels of testosterone still other environmental factors could make the later much more competitive than the first one.

In my previous article Does having low testosterone make you less of a man i explained how the external environmental factors can be much more powerful than the effect of hormones.

Yes hormones have a powerful impact on humans but if the environmental factors were strong enough they could actually make a person develop totally different personality traits.

Why are some people so competitive

A very ambitious person is very likely to be very competitive. An ambitious person would always want to have more resources and as a result he is very likely to keep comparing himself to others all the time. Those comparisons can fuel competitiveness and make that person addicted to winning. See also Why ambitious people suffer more than everyone else

Type A personalities are also very competitive as well. A Type A person usually hates losing and he might do anything just to be a winner.

The youngest child is also very competitive by nature , unless of course other environmental factors dampen his ambition. Youngest children usually develop the desire to strive to be better or to even be the best as a result of finding themselves the weakest member of the family. See youngest child personality traits.

A person can also become more competitive if people who mattered to him were around. If a man was near his wife during a competition then he might become more competitive as a result of wanting to avoid the shame of losing in front of her.

To sum things up

So as you can see there are many reasons that could lead to the same behaviour. In some cases one or more reasons could be present together and as a result the person might be extremely competitive.

If a youngest child turned out to be a type A personality then this person might be competitive to an exaggerated extent. Now if that male also had high levels of testosterone then this could make his competitiveness ever more vigorous.

The fact that environmental factors play such a role is also the reason why some females are very competitive even though they have much lower levels of testosterone than men.

In short when it comes to a trait such as competitiveness the causes behind it are much more complex than you might have thought. By understanding the person's past, thoughts and beliefs you can easily find out the specific reasons that led to his over competitivness.

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