How to stop comparing yourself to others…?
In the age of Internet and the social media, comparing ourselves to others has never been easier. All we need to do is log onto Facebook to see what our friends are up to, or how they’re looking, and we can compare them with our own lives.
Are we as interesting and as fun-loving as them? Do we look as good as them? Do we have as many friends as them? Are their teeth better than ours? And if the answer is ‘NO’ to every single question, then why is the answer ‘no’?
This kind of comparison can act as motivation for us to do better, but it can also have detrimental effects too. For example, it can cast the nasty cloud of self-doubt over us, and it can make us want to curl up in a ball, delete Facebook, and turn into crazy cat people. After all, if we’re not as good enough as everyone else, why not just become a recluse instead?
It really is a sad fact of life that comparing ourselves to others has got worse due to the advent of social media, but to make sure that you stop using others as a yardstick for your own self-worth, let’s take a look at 10 reasons why you should stop comparing yourself to others.
1. It Damages Your Sense Of SELF
Your sense of self is important; it’s what helps you reach out and achieve things in the world, such as a new job or a happy relationship. Without a sense of self, it’s easy to crumble and disappear. The great American writer Mark Twain wrote that “comparison is death of joy,” and if you continue to compare yourself to your friends, who are seemingly doing much better than yourself, negative feelings of envy, low self-esteem and even depression can set in. The result is that you may lose all motivation to achieve anything.
2. It Prevents You From Attaining Your Goals
Another reason why you should stop comparing yourself to others is that it prevents you from attaining your goals and dreams. Your goal for the next year might have been to stick at your job and save some money for the end of the year. It was a nice goal and it was achievable. But then you heard all about your old friend who now rakes in $100,000 a year, and all of a sudden your goal has changed. You compare yourself and your career goals to your friend and you decide that you should be doing better.
But this is irrational, and it can lead to the creation of a goal that just isn’t sustainable. If you want to live a life of fulfilment, it’s better to look at your needs and wants, rather than look at what others have and decide that you should be doing better. Sure, your friend is earning the big bucks, but are they happy? And will you be happier on that kind of money, or will you then meet another old friend who is earning $200,000 a year?
3. You’re Focusing On The Wrong Person
Next reason why you should stop comparing yourself to others is that you are focusing on the wrong person. Your friends are not you. Your work colleagues are not you. And Taylor Swift definitely is not you. So why focus on them? Instead, you need to focus on the only person who you can control – yourself! You see, by focusing on others, you’re not being productive and you’re not enhancing your life. Instead, you’re just watching others enhance theirs.
4. You Ignore Areas That You Could Work On
When we compare ourselves to others, we don’t actually always compare ourselves unfavourably to those who are seemingly better off than we are; we also compare ourselves favourably to those whom we consider to be “beneath” us. But this only increases our ego, and it causes us to lose sight of any areas that we could improve on. Rather than welcome criticism and accept that we could improve this or that, we take an egotistical mindset and decree that we are the best and that the opinions of others don’t matter.
5. There Is Nothing To Gain – But Much To Lose
Next big reason why you should stop comparing yourself to others is that you don’t gain anything by doing so. Nope, there is nothing to gain when you compare yourself unfavourably to others. But in terms of what you lose? How about your dignity, self-respect, self-esteem, purpose, pride? That’s a heck of a lot of stuff to lose, and we just can’t see that it’s worth it.
6. You Fail To Consider The Differences
People are different, and that’s all there is to it. You’re different to me, and I’m different to my mom. For this reason, it’s just downright silly to constantly compare ourselves to others. If you live your life comparing yourself to that 18 year old entrepreneur, you’ll easily get depressed. Okay, so she’s 18 and has already made a fortune selling her startup, but this doesn’t take into account how she became successful. She may have got lucky, or she may have had a huge helping hand. Rather than use the success of others to destroy yourself, consider the many different circumstances that lead us down different paths in life.
7. Comparisons Are Just A Waste Of Time
Another huge reason why you should stop comparing yourself to others is that it’s a waste of your precious time. You only get 24 hours in a day, which equates to 86,400 seconds. It sounds like a lot, but it really isn’t. And do you really want to waste even a few of those seconds comparing yourself to other people? It’s just a waste of your precious time, and actually stops you from bettering your life!
8. Success Is Relative
Success is all down to your life and your outlook. It isn’t down to anyone else’s. You might be a writer who makes a living selling ebooks, and you might be happy about this. But then one day you might compare yourself to the bestsellers in the New York Times who are making more money than you, and who are better writers than you. This causes you to look at your own sales, and your own talents. You quickly decide that you are not worthy and that something has to change.
But this just leads to stress and it can lead to goals that you simply can’t reach. Success is relative, and many wanna-be writers would just love to have the kind of success you’re experiencing.
9. You’ll Find Yourself Feeling Resentful
Next major reason why you should stop comparing yourself to others is that it makes you feel resentful.
You hate her face. You hater her smile. You hate her dress. You hate the way she talks.
And you HATE the fact she has such a handsome husband and two beautiful kids.
Yes, you’re been bitten by the green-eyed jealousy monster and you’re feeling pretty darn resentful. It’s not a cool feeling, is it?
10. You’re No Longer Happy
When you compare yourself to others, you lose that sense of joy that you once had. You feel blue and wish you were someone else. These are negative feelings that can kill the spark we once had, and this spark can be hard to retrieve once it’s gone. Instead of comparing yourself to others, enjoy the unique person you are. Work hard on your skills, get out there and enjoy the world. Nobody else is comparing you to others – only you are! Life is what you make of it, and to become a success you have to be yourself. Don’t worry about others!