We all know how deadly negativity can be to every area of our lives. Unfortunately….it has a very close cousin that is just as deadly.
I think it’s greatest strategy is in people accepting it as a natural part of life. You can compare your current self to your old self…which I think is a great practice when done properly.
You can compare results of a program, clothing, schools, cars, etc.
The real danger of comparison comes with comparing yourself, your life, family, husband, kids, etc..to that of someone else.
It is a great way to kill your contentment. We aren’t talking about complacency; that is another beast all it’s own. No….we are talking about being content with where you are in life. It doesn’t mean you aren’t working towards improvements; it just means your attitude is not a negative one.
With social media and reality TV we can see all too clearly how well someone is doing…and how much better their life is than ours.
I am not going to say what many people say (I used to)….”they are probably miserable”,”they are probably not good people”….etc. It’s this acknowledgement of “yeah they have a great life, but it can’t be as great as it seems…they must have some terrible secret pain that keeps them up at night.”
If we want to be prosperous and happy then we have to believe that other people can be prosperous and happy. How can we pray for something we don’t believe exists?
When you compare your life to what you know about someone else’s life you don’t take into consideration what it took for them to get there. Maybe if you learned from their process instead of complaining about how they are more successful you might also become the thing you hope for in life.
I recently started following Tiphani Montgomery on periscope. She is a 7 time best-selling author, including the number one spot. If I compared my life to hers (and I did) then she definitely wins and I lose.
Losing at the comparison game is NOT inspiring. In fact, it has the complete opposite effect on you. It makes you want to give up. I mean, why even bother? I can never be her. I am not as smart as her. I am not as talented as her….etc.
We share some similarities though….we were both teen parents….we both want to (she is actually doing it) inspire people to live out their dreams.
I mean…we share the same God and what He has done for her He will do for me. I don’t want to be her. I want to be me. I want to be who God has called ME to be.
If I had not recognized the dangers of comparisons I would have missed out on the most valuable thing….the “how”.
How did she do this? Do you see how the focus changes? It’s not about WHAT she has that I don’t. It’s about the process she used to get there. You know what I learned about her recently? She doesn’t watch TV!!!
Do you have any idea how much TV I watch?!?! So now…it’s no longer this unfair comparison where I come out on the bottom. It’s the result of research and knowledge seeking that reveals strategies she has in her life I don’t have in my own.
The same is true no matter the comparison. Maybe you compare yourself financially to someone, or physically. Instead of comparing yourself to them, LEARN what they did. The truth of the matter is where we put in the work we will reap a harvest.
We want to have what they have without the work…..most of us anyway….myself included. Will I give up TV?….who knows, but at least my joy and happiness won’t be victims of comparison. I may decide that I like my life the way it is..or that I don’t want it a new one bad enough to give up TV.
I challenge you to replace comparison with research and see what you learn.