When you begin your MBA program, you are essentially diving into a swift current that will force you ever forward, leaving you little time to admire the view. This metaphor is fairly accurate for the individual who is contemplating their discrete role in the process. But the extrinsic experience of the MBA is one that leaves little time for introspection. It is therefore prudent to prime yourself for an adventurous journey and to embrace the idea that you have set into motion a series of events that you must refrain from judging until you have fulfilled the original commitment to yourself.
In addition to this attitudinal shift, it is crucial that you recognize some of the powerful, almost primal urges that will rear their ugly heads during your trials. One such impulse is that of competitiveness. You will be surrounded by brilliant minds and formidable entities with great will power. The fact that you are among them is self-evidence of your merit. You deserve to be here, and you will find, not with little pride, your various strengths relative to this intimidating horde. If you try hard enough, and work smartly enough, you may very well find yourself to be the one to beat.
And then, quite suddenly, it all falls crashing down.
And if you are not equipped with the requisite resilience to recoup from the loss of enabled self-confidence, you may take more time than is worth the while to return to your journey and continue learning from it.
Remember that you are here, in this sheltered sandbox, to learn, and then to learn some more. Anything else that comes out of this experience is gratuity that you should happily accept but never expect. The rat race of comparing yourself to your colleagues and being either patronizing or begrudging gets very old very quick. It also happens to yield next to nothing, especially relative to the copious amounts of energy necessary to maintain that level of delusional self-interest.
This is an opportunity to enter what many will call a rat race, and whether it is one or not, you must remain well above it to succeed.