3 Important Steps to Overcome the Pitfalls of Comparison

The morning started out like any other “first day of school” morning.  Rushing around to get ready so I could take the same photos of them on the front porch that I had taken since the first day of Kindergarten.  Yes! I had made it through another first day of school with smiles as I watched their buses drive away.  

With a full heart, I checked my phone one last time before getting ready for work and there on social media was a barrage of pictures that my friends had posted of their sophomore’s in front of their cars.  It hit me like a ton of bricks …the tears started rolling.  My sophomore, Jack, does not have a car nor would he be driving himself to school.  I was sad and I felt sad for him too.  

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I let that sadness consume my entire day. Any mention of school triggered another wave of tears.

Comparison: a seemingly harmless word.  If we are not careful this harmless word can lead to major disappointment and discontent.

Believe me, I know all too well the feelings that accompany comparison.  I had allowed comparison to invade my mind.  

You see, I have a son who has an intellectual disability as well as a visual impairment.  The reality is he will probably never drive.  That’s tough for a kid in high school when all of his friends are driving and he has to take the bus to school.  I know it bothers him even though he seems to rebound pretty quickly and not let it get him down for too long.  I could learn a lot from him.  I wasn’t able to respond quite so quickly and the sad thing is that I didn’t see it coming.  

How many times have we compared ourselves to someone’s hairstyle, wardrobe, well manicured yard, holiday decorations, cooking, kids, etc.?  It’s human nature right?  How does it make you feel?  My guess is that is causes stress, anxiety, frustration and countless other negative emotions. 

Comparison is the thief of joy and adds no value to your life.  It can rob you of happiness and self confidence and create a distraction in your life.  

Identifying the triggers that accompany comparison and following the steps below can help you overcome the pitfalls of comparison.

  • Practice daily gratitude and soon enough you will recognize the amazing things you already have. 
  • Focus on developing an abundance mindset by spending time reflecting on the positives rather than negatives. 
  • Instead of comparing to someone else, compare yourself to yourself and strive to be the best possible version of you!  
Everything in life is easier when you don’t concern yourself with what everybody else is doing
— author unknown