Competency is your knowledge and skill in a particular subject area. Competition can be real, perceived or imagined. True competence comes from lifelong learning and experience that gradually taught you what you know. Perceived competition comes from other people who judge you based on external factors and their experiences with you.

A study shows that competition can increase sales. An experimenter at a mall approached unsuspecting customers and asked them to buy raffle tickets. In the first situation, the experimenter dazzled buyers with his incredible computing power when he was actually using a hidden communication device. In the following situation, the experimenter showed poor calculation skills and made a fool of himself. In the third and final situation, the experimenter did not have any incredible abilities. The study found that shoppers bought considerably more raffle tickets from the supposed calculating genius. The situation in which the experimenter showed extreme competition increased sales.

We view others as competent when we see them continually learning and progressing in their training and education, succeeding in what they do, or having a strong track record with everyone they have worked with. Ultimately, it all comes down to "either you know it or you don't." Can you deliver what people are looking for? The dictionary definition of competence is the quality of being adequately or well qualified physically and intellectually. Competency is being qualified to teach, persuade, or act on a particular topic.

People will watch and judge you to see if you pass as competent. Two studies clearly illustrate this point. In the first study, a group of elementary school children watched a video of two children taking a math test. The teacher walked among the children and looked at each of their papers. She did not say anything to one boy while she said to the other: "Don't forget to bring your ten." The children who watched the videotape were told that the children scored the same on the test. Then they were asked who they wanted as a future math partner. Most of the children chose the child who did not receive any help from the teacher. The simple need for assistance will influence how others perceive your competence.

Personal growth and development is one of the biggest competition factors. When you focus on your development, you are using your knowledge and mental abilities. You find hidden motivation and develop a sense of urgency and a sense of direction that will take you to higher levels of success. You can't be successful until you decide to jump out of your comfort zone and try the things you've always wanted, the things that challenge you. Many feel that reading and personal development is something that when you are in school you have to have a good time. Your true education comes after your education. Traditional education provides you with a foundation for your continued progress and growth.

If you don't continue to educate yourself, you will never achieve true success. If you don't build on yourself, your prior knowledge education will begin to deteriorate and disappear. If you don't develop your mind, you will starve. Even without eating, you will be hungry, but after a few days the hunger pangs will cease to exist. Just by feeding your mind after months of neglect, you will no longer feel the need for personal development. You need to program your mind to achieve exponential success. You can choose to achieve success at a fast or slow pace or no pace. Personal development is the key to how quickly you want to be successful. Never be impressed with your knowledge or if you become smarter than others. Your mind needs to be exercised and nourished. Your mind cannot live on junk food.

Most people go through life not knowing that they don't know. Ignorance destroys when the person does not know that he does not know and believes that he knows but does not know. But you want to know, but you are not willing to pay the price for knowing. It seems that the more you read, the less you feel like you know. The less you read, the more you think you know. If we are not working on ourselves, we do not realize that the wealth of knowledge awaits us.

Author's Bio: 

The science of physics offers an excellent example of simplicity and elegance. Physicists are often driven to refine their theories to an "elegant" formula.