by - September 01, 2019

Comparison - something that can be so hurtful to yourself and almost inevitable. It usually entails looking up to someone who is supposedly doing a lot better than you and feeling less worthy because you have not achieved the same. I think most people do this even if subconsciously at some point (in my case and many others it is not done purposefully). 

We know that comparing ourselves to others can take away so much happiness. Yet it is so difficult to do sometimes. We naturally tend to want to compare to give us some sort of guideline- some sort of idea of where we should be. But, too much can become unhealthy and detrimental to mental health. Below are the top 6 things I think about when I find I am comparing myself too much to others. Hopefully, this will help foster a mindset that doesn't compare your success to someone else's or at least compares less. 

1) We each lead different lives. You are different person to the person you are comparing yourself with and are living a different life.  Life is complex and nobody experiences it at the same pace or in the same order. Things go wrong and not to plan. Your life is uniquely yours so you cannot compare it to anyone else's. Whilst some people may be in similar circumstances to you, no one is in the exact same circumstances as you. You cannot fairly compare yourself to someone else when they are not in the exact same situation as you - think of it like a science experiment.  

2) There will always be someone who does better than you and someone who does worse. This is why comparing yourself to others is such a never-ending cycle that will never lead you to be happy. Because there will always be someone who has more, has done more, and seems better. Equally, there will be someone in a worse situation than you are in. So instead focus on what you do have and how far you have come. Comparing is a game you will never win - the only person you should compare yourself to is a past you. This should be in a healthy way and with a mindset of am I doing better than before and what can I learn from my previous experiences? 

3) We are all special in some way. Often when comparing we are comparing ourselves to an ideal or what we perceive to be an ideal for ourselves. But we are all different people, with different things to offer. It is that individuality that truly sets us apart and makes us who we are. So we should appreciate ourselves for who we are and the unique things we have to offer. Don't seek to be a copy. Success is relative. We are all on our own journeys and have different aims. Define your own idea of success based on what bring you joy not what you think everyone else will consider "successful". After all, it is the journey rather than the result that matters - what you learnt, the memories you made, how much you enjoyed yourself...

4) You are probably comparing your low to someone else's high. When comparing to someone else, we do not see all the work behind the scenes or everything that has happened before and after. We do not see the times when people have failed and not accomplished what they wanted. We just see a certain ideal than seems better than ours and that just serves to try and trick us into thinking that we are not good enough. You will have different moments of success and those are unique to you and something you should be proud of.

5) Watch who you are following on social media. Especially when it comes to comparison beauty wise and body image wise. Pay attention to the way the people you follow make you feel. Are they people who you look at and find yourself wanting to be like them in an unhealthy way. Unfollow these people and make sure that the individuals you do follow are accounts that inspire you and don't enforce unrealistic expectations. 

6) Someone else’s success does not take away from our own. We’ve been taught as a society to compete and especially as women, that the success of another woman is a threat to our own. That’s not the case. We’re all unique- we all will be successful in our own ways and we thrive by lifting each other up and not tearing each other down. 

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