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December 19, 2021

Rivalry: How to beat a basic instinct, with Luke Burgis
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Humans are more rivalrist than we like to believe. So much so, that it's the human nature to tend towards rivalries and competition. We've seen it since the beginning of time, as almost every religious culture has ancient stories of sibling rivalries. This is because, as humans, we take delight in seeing someone else fail. This is something we should be hyper-aware of because according to Luke Burgis, envy always leads towards misery.

Look at it from this perspective - if no one else wanted the things in life you wanted, would you question if that thing is truly desirable? This can range from dating and business, to even the food we order at a restaurant. The strange mystery of desire is that we look to other humans to figure out what it is that we want, and we adopt another's desires as the own. This creates problems when we are all competing towards having the same thing.

These shared desires and outcomes then lead towards a scarcity mindset, and we look to those who desire what we do and view them as a rival or competition. More often than not, this leads down a path towards envy and misery. But not all rivalries are bad. We see healthy competition in sports and business all the time, such as Enzo Ferrari and Ferruccio Lamborghini to Larry Bird and Magic Johnson.

Read the video transcript: bigthink.com/videos/rivalries/

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About Luke Burgis:

Luke Burgis has co-created and led four companies in wellness, consumer products, and technology. He’s currently Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Director of Programs at the Ciocca Center for Principled Entrepreneurship where he also teaches business at The Catholic University of America. Luke has helped form and serves on the board of several new K-12 education initiatives and writes and speaks regularly about the education of desire. He studied business at NYU Stern and philosophy and theology at a pontifical university in Rome. He’s Managing Partner of Fourth Wall Ventures, an incubator that he started to build, train, and invest in people and companies that contribute to a healthy human ecology. He lives in Washington, DC with his wife, Claire, and her crazy New Orleans cat Clotille.

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Read more of the stories on rivalries:
Facebook moving forward with hiding like counts to fight envy
►► bigthink.com/the-present/facebook-removes-like-counts
How your level of self-esteem determines the success of ‘envy marketing’
►► bigthink.com/surprising-science/envy-marketing-doesnt-work-on-people-with-low-self-esteem-study-says-2
The difference between schadenfreude and sadism
►► bigthink.com/neuropsych/schadenfreude-sadism

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