I don’t mind where we end up because I know it’s going to be beautiful.
How many times have you looked at someone else’s life and felt envious of what you saw? Perhaps you’ve compared:
• Their family to your family
• Their home to your home
• Their successes to your successes
• Their lifestyle to your lifestyle
• Their financial standing to your financial standing
• Their habits to your habits
Now ask yourself how many times you’ve allowed yourself to feel less than, inadequate, or unworthy from these measurements.
Social comparison theory is the idea that individuals determine their own social and personal worth based on how they stack up against others.
Upward comparison occurs when we compare ourselves to someone we perceive as better than us and often focuses on the desire to improve our current status or level of ability.
Downward comparison occurs when we compare ourselves to someone we perceive as worse off than us and often centers on making ourselves feel better about our abilities or traits.
Comparing ourselves to others can help motivate us to improve, but it can also promote judgmental, biased, and overly competitive or superior attitudes.
When you find yourself trapped in a comparison loop, keep the following tips in mind:
• Recognize that you’re likely using an unrealistic target when evaluating yourself and adjust accordingly
• Consider what you’re trying to achieve when making a comparison
• If comparisons have you feeling down, spend some time thinking about positives
It’s easy to admire the outcome of someone else’s journey without acknowledging the failures, missteps, setbacks, and roadblocks that were encountered along the way.
Remember that your destination will look different than anyone else’s, as will the road you take to get there.
Be transparent in what and how you share. Don’t shy away from using your voice, your platform, your outlet to disclose what happens behind the scenes of your successes. And remember: you are headed somewhere beautiful even if you can’t see where it is yet.