NN003 – Comparison & Competition

Comparison (noun)the representing of one thing or person as similar to or like another

Competition (noun)a contest between rivals

The Unwinnable Game

There is a quiet game many of us play on a daily basis that we may not realize is happening. How often do you compare yourself to others? Or how often do you find yourself competing with your friends, siblings, co-workers or possibly the perfect image you have of yourself?

We have all heard of keeping up with the Jones’ in our neighborhood. If not, that is the act of outdoing your neighbors by buying the best car, toys, gadgets, etc. That game typically has a monetary or “Stuff” scorecard. At some point you run out of money and just can’t keep up.

What if the game you are playing is not with money as your game piece but rather in your mind? There is no shortage of brain cells to fire up when playing that game.

Change the Game

Rather than look outward to see how you stack up against those around you, focus on yourself and be grateful for who you are.

  • Your Worst vs. Their perfection
  • Who Cares?
  • What happens if you win?

Your Worst vs. Their perfection

This may sound familiar but it’s true. Often, your focus is on all of the bad things about yourself – bad hair day, older car, unorganized garage, well worn clothes, etc.

Conversely, all you see is their perfection – new car, vacations, perfectly clean house, behaved kids, etc. Or at least what you think is their perfection.

In reality, we are all human and the struggles that you have are similar to the struggles that your “competitors” have. The image of them that you are chasing in your head is fabricated – it isn’t real.

You have been chasing a ghost that doesn’t exist

Who Cares?

Let’s say you somehow were able to catch the person you are competing against.

  • You scrimped and saved and finally bought the same car
  • You ran out and bought the same designer fad do-dad that they have
  • You painted your house was and it looks just as good as theirs

So what? Who cares?

Seriously!! Who cares if you were able to “catch” them. Now what? Do you feel any more fulfilled?

I bet not.

What happens if you win?

When your anxiety is building over the next “competition” ask yourself – what does it matter?

If I go do that “thing” will it really bring me joy?

If I accomplish that goal of matching what they have what will I need to sacrifice to do it?

What needs to be sacrificed in order for you to compete?

What can’t you provide for your family?

What time is wasted?

What attention of their wants or needs is spent elsewhere?

If the answers to these things are a net negative for you or your family don’t do them.

Live YOUR life

Competition is a noble endeavour in life. It is something we should all experience at some point. Where it isn’t a “good thing” is when you are creating an adversary in your mind that you will never be able to catch.

This creates a level of anxiety, stress and pressure that no one can or should have to live up to.

Tell yourself today that you are done competing for the adulation of others who have no idea that a competition is even happening.

Your outlook on life will be much brighter

Leave a Reply