Accept it! We are all guilty of comparing ourselves with others! Be it social media or any other platform, you constantly have been comparing yourself to others. Your body isn’t good enough, you are not trendy enough, your house is not big enough, or you yourself aren’t enough – these are some classic examples of comparison!
All of us are entirely fascinated by how other people are successful in their lives. And by looking at their progress, we begin questioning ourselves. See, asking yourself questions and comparing yourself to others for self-motivation is not bad. But when it goes out of the way, it can affect your life negatively.
Comparison can hinder your peace and well-being. It can also steal your joy or, worse – your sanity! If you don’t stop comparing yourself to others, you will constantly spend money and mental energy in just trying to keep up!
We all need to break this comparison cycle because it’s a game we will never win!
In this blog, we will look at why we compare ourselves to others and how we can stop it in order to have a better and healthy life!
What is the root cause of comparison?
There is a biological reason for you being prone to comparing yourself to others. Our brain uses comparison to determine how we measure up to other people.
Oscar Wilde says: ‘Be yourself; everybody else is taken’. Well, that’s excellent advice!
We can’t become anybody else because we are unique in our own ways. The qualities we have wouldn’t be there in others and vice-versa. So, from where does the question of comparison arise?
Well, we will always compare ourselves to others because it is the most fundamental way of developing an understanding of who we are, what we are good at, and what we are not so good at!
Most of the time, this calculation is made in a split second, and you don’t even realize it. But when you dwell on the highlights of other people’s lives, it can readily become toxic. Thus, when you begin comparing yourself to others, you are putting your happiness, confidence, and mental well-being at risk!
Reasons for comparing yourself to others
Comparing yourself to others is the grimmest way to live. We end up in miserable conditions and constantly feel inadequate.
Let us understand this statement in detail. Here are the reasons for why this feeling of insufficiency is constant in our lives!
1. We have been taught that success looks a specific way
Since we were kids, we were taught that going to school, getting a degree, having a stable job, getting married, buying a home, etc., is what success looks like! But what if it’s different from your version of success?
The good news is that we get to decide our own definition of success in life. We just need to focus on our goals!
As you stop comparing yourself to others, you will realize that your idea of success was all the way right, i.e., you are exactly where you need to be.
2. Lack of confidence in the path we have chosen
When you don’t feel confident about yourself or your chosen career path, you are bound to compare yourself to others.
Have you ever truly asked yourself – What do you really want? What is it that you desire?
Believing in yourself and staying confident will help you overcome mental exhaustion and instigate a sense of fulfillment. As a result, you might even stop comparing yourself to others!
3. Feeling constantly lagging behind
You don’t get success overnight!
When things move slowly, instead of giving ourselves more time, we decide that things aren’t working out in our favor. Also, when we feel like we are lagging, all we do is compare ourselves to the other person who is happy, prosperous, and abundant.
So, the first thing to do is cease this comparison game because it is not bringing us closer to our goals! So, it is best to stay in your lane and trust yourself.
There isn’t any magic pill that’s going to solve anything for you. Results take time, and you aren’t going to be successful overnight!
4. Lacking appreciation
If you are persistently comparing yourself to others, it will become challenging to feel grateful because we always feel that we need more. But what if everything you have right now is enough? What if who you were right now is enough? Ever thought about it?
Well, here’s some advice – you can work for what you desire and be grateful for what you already have.
You must understand that life is working for you and not against you. But if you feel that life situations are not in your favor, you are bound to attract negativity.
So, believe that who you are is enough! You don’t need to become anyone else; just be more of yourself!
It is vital to appreciate whatever you have in life. Just because someone thinks your life isn’t going well doesn’t mean that it actually isn’t. Comparing yourself to others is inevitable, but we can definitely limit it. How? Let’s look at it!
Practical ways to limit comparing yourself to others
We know that you also wish to just focus on yourself and stop comparing yourself to others. Right?
Below are the tried and tested pragmatic ways that will help you deal with comparison and make your life worthwhile!
1. Practice Gratitude
This is one of the most underrated habits! Practicing gratitude can change your life for the good. It doesn’t matter what you do or where you are; it is best to appreciate all that you have in life.
To inculcate this habit, you can have a gratitude journal or appreciation list and write things down on a daily basis. You can even say a gratitude prayer before you go to bed and after you wake up.
Showing gratitude will bring immense joy, and as a result, you will love your life and stop comparing yourself to others.
2. Unlock the power of contentment
Gratitude leads to contentment that allows you to be in a state of joy and satisfaction, no matter what situation you are in! In other words, you are happy with who you are and aren’t concerned about other people.
But that doesn’t mean that you don’t have goals in life or you are stagnant in your career. It just means that you have developed peace with life and enjoy every moment without stressing about how successful others are.
3. Focus on your strength
Staying humble and knowing about your strengths, talents, and accomplishments is rare in the present scenario but not impossible! So here is an activity you can try! Write down three things you really like about yourself. Remember that these pointers must be personal like:
- I am proactive…
- I love people because…
- I like managing things…
Use such prompts to stay humble and, at the same time, to take note of your strengths.
4. Celebrate other people’s success
Constantly comparing yourself to others can affect you negatively. It becomes hard to achieve goals and even more challenging when celebrating another person’s success!
Try out this activity – When a friend tells you about their job, be happy for them. If your neighbors buy a new car, congratulate them. If anyone else shares the good news with you, keep your focus on them instead of turning it back to yourself. Find big and small ways to commemorate others’ achievements! This way, you will have a positive attitude towards life and feel fulfilled!
5. Compete with yourself
You must know what you are about to hear! Rather than comparing yourself to others, focus on your goals, i.e., where are you compared to where you were at this time two years ago?
In order to track your progress, it is best to start journaling. It will give you clarity and a new perspective on life. It will also help you keep a record of your achievements, sunny days, gloomy days, and much more.
For instance, you have learnt, improved, and acquired new skills in the past two years. And in the current year, you have a full-fledged job. Now, see that from a student, you have become a professional in just two years! You have progressed!
So, all you have to do is set goals and work towards them. Then, compete with yourself and witness your goals getting accomplished! Remember – you are your own competition!
6. Limit your time on social media
It’s a fact that you cannot be completely satisfied/ delighted with your life if you are constantly looking at what someone else has!
If you struggle to be grateful for what you have in life and are jealous of what others have, then it’s time to put on some serious blinders for a little while.
This is what you can do – limit your time on social media. Shut off from all the social media platforms and spend that time and energy looking at how much you actually have! Look at your family, friends, colleagues, job, and all other things in your life that matter. Find things that others might be jealous of! So, the key is to rejoice in all you have and be grateful for it!
Stop comparing yourself to others – Being you is your superpower!
Comparing yourself to others is a normal process of human cognition. While not all comparisons are critical, it is crucial to constantly look inward to confront the negative emotions it may cause.
If you find yourself in this pattern, it is best to redirect your energy towards the things that really matter to you.
Comparison is an ongoing practice that can harm you in the long run. Therefore, we advise you to be the best version of yourself because no other person is more ‘you-er than you‘!
Did you find this blog helpful? Tell us in the comments below!