How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
Comparison leads to a lot of new information.
When comparing yourself to others, a contrast is created.
All knowledge exists in a state of contrasts.
You don’t know something.
New information is presented.
Now you know something.
Therefore, comparison is not bad.
But it becomes bad when too much comparison happens.
With social media, you open your phone and are suddenly bombarded with images of people having something you don’t.
More comparison ensues.
To stop this toxic cycle, read on…
How Comparison Starts at a Young Age
I wrote this one newsletter where I talked about being overly competitive for a while.
I shared how I was too competitive in Toastmasters which led me to be jealous of the other speakers.
Once I stopped competing with them to compete with my prior day self, I became inspired by them.
- Creativity = Unlocked.
Once I hit sent, I received an email from a reader.
‘Why do I compare myself to others so much? I can’t stop.’
I asked the guy more questions.
Eventually, I was led to his background.
He was Korean.
A lot of Koreans have strict parents.
In their household, a B is perceived as a D and a C is perceived as an F.
Whenever this guy would do good in a class, but not get an A, his parents would be like:
‘What happened? Tom’s kids got an A in the same class, how come you didn’t?’
I interacted with that reader some more.
At a young age, he was being compared by his guardians.
The subconscious mind picked up the pattern.
And the subconscious mind held onto the pattern.
The Homeless Man
A few days ago, I was getting out of 7/11.
I bought some chocolate milk and was given some change.
As I was walking to my car, I saw this man with a dirty shirt staring at me.
He motioned his face like:
‘Got any change?’
But he never said those words.
After seeing his body language, I motioned:
‘Do you want this change?’
When I motioned to give him the change, his eyes lit up.
Once I gave him the change and went to my car, I felt sorry for him.
That was my default reaction.
It’s because it was hot as fuck that day in Florida.
And he was waiting outside asking for money.
‘Why is the homeless man’s story important?’
Because I never thought for a second to compare myself to him.
It’s because I saw him in a moment of struggle.
The Confidence Irony
In my book, Speak Easy, I break down a law known as the Confidence Irony.
This is when we undermine how confident we are.
Then we over-amplify how confident someone else is.
It’s best to flip it.
View yourself as more confident than you really are.
And view others as less confident.
The only time you begin comparing yourself to others is when you find a certain part of their life where they excel.
Not only are they excelling in that field…
But that’s the same part of your life where you’re not doing so well.
It’s like the successful single businessman who envies the family man’s family.
But the broke family man also envies the successful businessman’s riches.
Call that duel jealousy.
You compare yourself to others when you view them at a higher level than you.
In doses, it’s fine.
But do it too much, now it becomes poison.
How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
The first thing to understand is that problems are built into nature.
Just because Johnathan seems like a golden boy in all facets of his life…
He has a great family.
A great job.
A great physique.
Doesn’t mean that he’s perfect.
Secretly, he does drugs and is unable to stop.
He struggles with the fear of losing everything.
And that fear only amplifies his drug usage.
By humanizing Johnathan like I was able to humanize the homeless man that day, it’s easier to realize that too much comparison is a waste of time.
But gathering everyone you’re jealous of and finding flaws in them to humanize them is tedious.
You don’t have to do it with everyone.
Just find one person you constantly compare yourself to.
Then do your best to humanize them.
You may lack information on the setbacks they have.
But remember, problems are built into nature.
So, if you are unable to articulate what their setback is, then just assume they have one.
This allows you to humanize them and keep it pushing.
Be Too Busy to Compare Yourself to Others
The act of finding setbacks in someone that you’re jealous of is just a mental experiment to realize that no one is perfect.
But to nip this problem in the bud, the solution is to level up.
Improve a minimum of 1% daily in something.
- Make today better than yesterday and tomorrow better than today.
Naturally, this allows you to focus more on your life and less on others.
Someone who is comparing themself too much to others most likely doesn’t have much going on.
A bit of jealousy is good.
It serves as a compass.
You’re jealous of Ricky’s body.
Chances are you need to get in shape.
But being jealous of Ricky’s body and not going to the gym is jealousy gone wrong.
Go to the gym, bud.
Focus more on that.
The tiny 1%’s adds up.
Soon, you’ll realize Ricky was never your enemy.
He was simply living his life.
Hopefully, now you are living yours.
To get the blueprint on how to level up, be sure to check out my book:
- Level Up Mentality: A Guide to Re-Engineer your Mindset for Confidence.
This book will teach you how to:
- Use jealousy to your advantage.
- Leverage 1% daily improvements to get the snowball rolling.
- Effective ways to practice.
Along with plenty of other topics.
Grab a copy here: