Monday, 24 December 2018

Essay on We should be Cooperative rather than Competitive

Essay on We should be Cooperative rather than Competitive

When asked what works better-Cooperation or Competition, we would definitely say cooperation. It has also been verified by scientists in hundreds of studies since 1800s, still we find it surprising how big businesses, parents, institutions and our education system go on promoting competition and almost ignore the power of cooperation. But what is important to know and understand is that no human can live or survive in isolation. While competition brings out the beast' in us; cooperation brings out the 'best' in us; as demonstrated by research.

Cooperative rather than Competitive
Human nature is both cooperative and competitive depending upon the context. In primitive environment, surviving alone was not feasible and signals like physical pain, hunger etc. pushed humans to alter undesirable states. Soon, humans evolved to feel loneliness as pain to encourage teaming up, in order to escape loneliness. But rationally speaking, we are not essentially cooperative and that cooperation happens only when we find it useful in our evolutionary process. For that matter, we need to learn the art of cooperation from ants that are super-organisms and die for the colony which they are a part of. But, they attack ants that are genetically different from them. They are the best examples of community cooperative living.

Too much competition can lead to poor health. The question of nature or nurture is not an issue as asserted by anthropologists and psychologists. Though we are born with certain tendencies or instincts, we can still transform our conduct, nature and personality through education, upbringing and our own conscious choices. After having tested every kind of occupation, skill and human behavior, one thing that has been inferred is that cooperation has yielded much more in terms of positive growth and creativity. Businessmen who work in cooperation with other businesses, gain perks and earn higher salaries and cooperative students from elementary grades to college have higher grade point averages. But the irony is that many people are unfortunately not taught cooperative skills.

Classroom students are taught to stay apart and quiet; which fosters competition indirectly. On the contrary, when people work cooperatively with each other, they learn best. This type of learning when nurtured in early age is carried along by a child till he matures. People must therefore, learn to be cooperative and education and psychology must work in coordination to teach people to cooperate. In a particular setting, when people come closer to interact and cooperate with each other, they tend to feel good about themselves as learners. They have a better sense of community, belonging and acceptance besides their self-esteem going high.

But what we find today is surprising. The means by which individuals once learned cooperative skills are eroding and there are a lot of reasons to ponder upon. Churches, homes, communities which once used to be the standard ways to teach cooperation to people, do not function the same old way. Young people being taught how to cooperate do not exhibit the requisite level of interest. This results into unabated competition.

Cooperation serves the individuals working together in several key areas, such as creating fluid leadership, allowing everyone to participate actively without fear of censor and influencing an individual’s perception of the work environment. It also impacts health and according to a research, it has been proved that cooperative individuals are better adjusted psychologically and are physically healthier than their more competitive colleagues. On the other hand, competition or the constant feeling of working against something leads to unhealthy physical side effects. Cooperative environment facilitates the quality of the outcome by increasing the number of ideas and cooperation as a valuable commodity works best when it's freely given and indirectly encouraged. Being a good thing towards everyone cooperation is a gift that is always appropriate.

While natural competition between men of any group provides a system of checks and balances, and healthy competition can be a positive incentive in the workplace, too much competition can be deadly and may kill morale, cause stress and foster backstabbing. On the flipside, working together and helping each other releases brain chemicals that enhance motivation, pressure and bonding. While competition benefits only certain people, it leads many to drift towards stress and make them work in highly tensed environment. We can't trust one another if we are thriving in an atmosphere of cutthroat competition; instead, trust and will fear prevail. This fear further induces various kinds of negative behaviors from passive resistance and political maneuvering to self-problem.

Turning everything into a competition leads to unnecessary conflict, while cooperation evolves beneficial relationship skills that further help us to be good at teamwork and collaborate with others in the real world. Working in cooperation with others and using cooperative skills such as listening, sharing and negotiating teaches us beneficial relationship skills and helps us to be good at teamwork. Ideas and strategies are used to win together.

War is an obvious example of the deadly competition within the human species, but most of us do not in realize that the same continues even during the times of peace”. People lacking the skills, education, talent or opportunity to compete in our competitive economy become poor; and this results in death, rates of which are at least six times higher than the rich.

So, instead of deadly competition, what works better is cooperative competition. It is also suggested that by working together, people can push each other to be more productive and produce stronger work. This further releases chemicals in brain that enhance motivation, pleasure and bonding. These 'feel good chemicals make people more intrinsically motivated. Thus, students in their primary education must be taught cooperative games so that they evolve into persons with established cooperative social behavior.


In the end, what stands out most is our exceptional capacity for generosity and mutual trust and those moments in which we act cooperatively to establish the human race as the best species on the earth. Even the good leaders manage competition by creating an environment that encourages cohesion, cooperation and collaboration. Cooperative competition is a sure way to define roles, encourage free speech and keeps the people honest and open which ultimately leads to an atmosphere full of productivity, creativity and trust.

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