(DailyProsper.com) – Few things sap joy and creativity quite like comparisonitis. It paralyzes us, makes us doubt ourselves and prevents us from chasing our dreams. But truthfully, it’s also a curse that many of us go through at some point in our lives. The real challenge is not in coping with it, but in breaking free of it for good.
What Is Comparisonitis?
Comparisonitis is the compulsive tendency to compare your life and abilities to others. It’s when seeing someone do something better than you or (seemingly) excelling in their life makes you feel inferior. You might experience jealousy or resentment toward this person. And if you let it go unchecked, you might even start to feel apathetic about your own life.
Comparisonitis is an easy trap to fall into. It’s not healthy, and it can cause you to miss out on so many opportunities and happy times. Here are a few thoughts to keep in mind if you ever catch yourself making comparisons.
Life Isn’t a Competition
First and foremost, it’s important to remember that life isn’t a competition. Sometimes it can seem that way, but in reality, we all come from different backgrounds, each of us moving at our own pace. There’s no rule dictating that you need to accomplish any goal by a certain time. Life is meant to be lived, not won.
Comparison Steals Satisfaction
When comparing yourself to others, you might have an idea of the type of person you want to be. Maybe you wish you had better social skills or more raw talents, for example. But the funny thing about comparisonitis is that it tends to make you overlook your own strengths. This means that you may not feel satisfied, even when you make a big accomplishment. More likely, you’ll just find another point of comparison or flaw to criticize.
Your Uniqueness Is a Good Thing
Most of us want to stand out, but not necessarily when that deviates from the norm. Sounds a little counterintuitive, doesn’t it?
But think about this: we’re often tempted to measure success based on the standards society sets for us. What about the standards that you set?
Are you following your passion, or are you trying to succeed at something just because it seems like everyone else is better at it than you? You’re a unique individual, so why let your perceptions of others dictate your goals?
Their Life Isn’t What It Seems
It’s easy to look at the people around you and see confidence, strength and capability. But in most cases, you’re only seeing part of the story. We all have our challenges, our weaknesses, our insecurities. The person at work you’re constantly comparing yourself to? They could have issues going on in their personal life that you know nothing about. People often don’t feel as able and assured as they look, so you’re probably in better company than you realize.
The first step toward breaking the comparisonitis curse is to recognize that you’re not alone and that you’re allowed to live by your own rules. By focusing what you enjoy rather than trying to measure up to the successes and standards of others, you can achieve goals beyond your wildest dreams — and maybe find more joy in everyday life, too.
~Here’s to Your Success!
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