Comparison is part of life, it's instinctive (we're human) but it can also be pervasive & impactful in ways it does not need to be - comparisonitis!

I always struggled with comparison. You name it, I've compared myself, and interpreted external comparisons, and found myself lacking.

I got good exam results. My sister got better.

I got a job in a great company. Every year we were ranked against each other and told exactly where we "fit" into the sequence of our peers.

As a mum I would hear "what's your son doing now? Mine is doing x, y, z" (implied "better / earlier / faster" than mine)

You can't get away from it.

Irrationally that little voice in your head (I think we all have one… is there anyone who doesn't??)  takes that negative comparison, looks at it from all angles, adds more stories to back it up, ignores any stories that don't back it up, makes it bigger than it was, applies it in all sorts of areas of our life, and essentially blows it up into something huge….

Here's the thing… just because someone says it or you believe it doesn't make it true!

I heard a great analogy this week, that really resonated with me:

Imagine we are all chefs, and we all have different ingredients - it would be impossible to compare the meals we created based on anything other than opinion.

Now imagine our ingredients are things like our life experiences, our skills, our beliefs, our values.

No two people have the same ingredients - it is impossible.

So comparison of our meals, our lives, is also impossible - like the old saying, it would be "comparing apples and pears"

Ok, but what can we do about it?

Next time you are making comparisons and internally judging yourself, ask yourself:

  • Is that true? What could be another version of that story?
    • Hint: all our beliefs are stories, we get to pick the most empowering one!
  • Do I know everything about both sides of the comparison to make it a fair one?
    • Hint: no!
  • What am I making the comparison mean about me? Is that true?
    • Hint: is it true? No!
  • Is the comparison even relevant?
    • Hint: most often no! (my sisters exam results had no bearing on my life in any way!)

Next time someone else is offering you a comparison and so externally providing judgement, ask yourself:

  • What am I making the comparison mean about me? Is that true?
    • Hint: is it true? No!
  • What are the intentions of the ones making the comparison?
    • Hint: its usually to make the other person feel better about themselves (mum comparison), or to make life easier for themselves (employee ranking) ie - nothing to do with you!
  • Does the comparer know all of the details to make the comparison "fair"?
    • Hint: errr, no!
  • What does the comparison say about me as a person?
    • Hint: err, nothing! Its just an opinion based on limited information

So now you know that, you get to live your life, your way, free from comparison - what are you waiting for??

And if you need help to manage your comparisonitis, book a free 30minute call with me now, let's see how I can help!