I would like for someone to explain to me why trading is a competitive business. I understand that if I have a grocery store and someone else sets up a grocery store in the same block, I clearly have less profit available for me. This is the nature of a competitive business. I just don't understand at a theoritical or practical level why this is true of trading.
Most books on trading state that the professionals are better capitalized, have better tools, systems, staff and as an independent trader I am competing against them. What does this really mean? How can I suffer in my results or ability to succeed if the pros do good in their trading?
From what I understand about competitive games, a game, sport or activity is only competitive when the actions of others affect my own results.
As an example, in competitive sports like football, basketball, soccer, tennis, boxing, wrestling etc. what the other team does affects my teams strategies and whether I win or lose.
In non-competitive sports such as bowling, video games, golf, figure skating, running, swimming, bicycling, skiing, etc. I am really only playing against myself for an absolute score. What the others are doing is not really directly affecting my potential to win even though I am playing beside them.
An other example of a non-competitive event is grades in high school or college. Even though it feels like I am competing against other students, I am in fact only striving to achieve my best grade compared to the absolute best score. What other students are doing gradewise does not affect my grades.
Can someone logically explain to me why trading is competitive? Why do I have to "lose" potential profit in my trading business and ability to make a living if the pros or others are succeeding using their wealth of tools, computers and information and staff?
If the actions of all these other traders and institutions don't affect my potential, then why is the competitive aspect so frequently mentioned on a broad basis in trading literature? I feel like SW vendors, book sellers, trading education services, just above everyone is putting pressure on traders to be competitive and I think this is causing stress for those of us in this profession. I am willing to accept the stress if there a valid reason for this. Otherwise, I would just like to relax and know that we can all profit and I can ignore what others are doing.