I’ve been a Comparison Junkie for almost my entire life.
I think it began when my little sister was born. While I was shy, reserved and scared of my own shadow, she was outgoing, fearless and had the gift of the gab.
Growing up, she was the one with a lot of friends. The one being invited to all the birthday parties. The one who got the good grades because she wasn’t anxious every time she had to speak in front of an entire classroom.
Even our parents wished I were more like her. If only I could talk a little more, be a little more outgoing, make more of an effort to play with other kids rather than staying in my bedroom reading a good book…
When I grew up and decided to start my own business, the comparison game continued. If only I was more extroverted, more of a risk-taker like my sister, then I’d be successful. But can you really be an introvert and have a thriving business?
Comparisonitis is natural. We all do it. But, it’s a choice that steals all the joy out of your life. It makes you envious of other people and resent their accomplishments.
I know that, as much as I love my sister, for years I resented her simply because she has a different personality than mine. It coloured our relationship, creating huge cracks we’re now trying our best to repair.
Comparisonitis almost killed my business, too – before it was even born! I kept telling myself there was no point in me starting my coaching business. There were so many other amazing coaches out there. Who would want to work with me?
Comparisonitis is a poison that slowly ruins everything that’s good in your life. How do you break this nasty habit and stop comparing yourself to others? Here are 5 things that have worked for me:
1. Remember That Comparison Is The Thief Of Joy
When you find yourself having an attack of Comparisonitis, think of all the ways it has screwed you up in the past. It is a thief that:
- Keeps you stuck in a job you hate: Seriously, would you even still be there if you thought you were as good as all those other people already building their businesses?
- Ruins your relationships with your loved ones: Once they’re broken, fixing them isn’t so easy.
- Makes you waste time: Even a second spent comparing yourself to others is a second you’re never getting back. Is this how you want to spend your time?
- Is an unfair judge: You’re assuming that the other person is perfect and you’re worthless. Nothing is that black and white.
- Dumps you into a black hole: You could compare yourself to everyone and everything. When does it end?
- Makes you focus on the wrong person: You only control your life, not other people’s. So take control of it.
- Adds nothing to your life: Seriously, girl, has comparisonitis ever done anything good for you?
Comparisonitis screws up your life and then leaves you alone to pick up the pieces.Don’t let it.
2. Don’t Put Other People On A Pedestal
It’s easy to think everyone else has got it together. Just go on Instagram. Everyone has the perfect house, a wardrobe full of designer clothes, and always sells out her coaching programmes in two days. You? Your house’s a mess, you’re still shopping at Primark, and can barely sign up a new client a month.
Just because it seems that way, it doesn’t mean it is. People only put their best stuff on Instagram (after they’ve photoshopped the heck out of it). Just like they only show you their better side when you meet them in person.
No one wants to admit they don’t have it all figured out. That we’ve just cleaned a little area of our living room to take that polished shot, that our smiles are just facades hiding the fact our loving relationships are hanging by a thread, or that our sold out coaching programme only had two spots available.
You don’t know what anyone else is going through. Don’t assume they have it better than you if you can’t see the full picture.
3. Know Yourself
Just like other people aren’t the perfect heroes you think they are, you’re not as worthless as you think yourself to be, either.
You have qualities, gifts, and passions no one else in the world has. You’ve achieved plenty of things in your life already. Just think back on all the things you never thought you could do that are now second nature to you.
You already have everything you need to achieve all your dreams.
Go out and do it, girl!
4. Be Grateful
Comparisonitis makes you focus on all the things you don’t have – or think you don’t have. The grass always looks greener on the other side, doesn’t it?
But if you step back and take a look at your life, you’ll see you have a lot to be grateful for. Things like:
- Your unique qualities
- Your values and positive beliefs
- The awesome people in your life
- The skills you’ve accumulated along the way
- A roof over your head
- A beautiful sunset
- The desire to do something meaningful with your life
- Access to the internet
- And so much more…
Gratitude forces you to recognize how blessed you truly are right now. Focus on the positive and you’ll get more of it.
Related: How To Find Your Strengths
5. If You Need To Compare, Compare With Yourself
Rather than striving to be better than someone else, strive to be the best version of yourself you can possibly be. A little bit kinder. A little braver. A little more generous.
Commit to trying to do your best every day. Share your gifts. Start that business you’ve always dreamed of and help the people that need what only you can offer them.
Along the way, stop to celebrate your successes. When you share your treasures with the world, they don’t just benefit you. When you’re doing your best, you’re having a positive impact on everyone around you, too.
Comparisonitis doesn’t do anyone any good. The sooner you quit the habit, the sooner you’re free to pursue your own dreams and do the work you were born to do.
You’ve got what it takes.