If you are like me then sometimes you compare yourself to others. If you are like me you realize this is not a healthy behavior. Here are five reasons why:
- We do a lousy job of making decent comparisons.
We are bad at making accurate comparisons. Like really bad. We compare ourselves to people in different situations and stages of life. We compare our average to other people’s extraordinary. We compare ourselves to who others project they are and not who they actually are. Yeah, we pretty bad at comparing.
- We have better things to do with our time.
We have 1,440 minutes each day. After work, commuting, personal hygiene, folding laundry, walking the dog, and sleep—that number becomes significantly lower. Do you really want to waste these remaining precious minutes making inaccurate comparisons?
- Comparison causes us to evaluate the wrong person.
You are only responsible and capable of changing one person: you. Comparison disappoints because it moves the focus from where it should be (our growth and blessings) to an unpleasant place of wasting time counting the perceived blessings of others.
- We don’t want to carry resentment around.
Comparison leads to resentment because you concentrate on what you don’t have and become bitter and entitled. Resentment is a heavy load to lift. Unless you like being worn out, don’t carry that cargo.
- Comparison will make our relationships pathetic.
Comparison leads to jealousy. You can’t simultaneously love somebody and be jealous of that same person. Heck, it’s even tough to like somebody you are jealous of.
And now four better ideas:
- Encourage instead of envy. Cheer instead of compare.
It is destructive and self-destructive to lament at the success of others. Bad for the world and worse for you. Good actions lead to better beliefs. Encourage and cheer instead of envying and comparing. You’ll be a blessing to others and be blessed!
- Look to others as inspiration, not competition.
Constantly comparing ourselves to others is a cruel way to live. Being inspired by others and learning from others is an amazing experience. Figure out how to be inspired by others and not do the inaccurate comparison thing.
- Focus on progress.
The only person you should compare yourself to is who you were yesterday. Daily progress toward long-term dreams and goals is the single best thing you can do to change your life.
- Practice gratitude.
The opposite of comparison isn’t collaboration. The opposite of comparison is gratitude. The glasses of comparison blind us from the countless blessings we are experiencing. We can’t concurrently compare ourselves to others and be grateful. So be grateful. Write a gratitude list. Tell God and people “thank you” and do so often. Enjoy what and who you have.