I was reading a fantastic psychology book that addresses the dangers of excessive and unhealthy comparison.
The authors explained that constantly looking over our shoulder at what others are doing takes our eyes off what’s ahead of us. By fixating on someone else, they said, we lose unrecoverable time that could be devoted to becoming uniquely great.
Anytime I find myself stuck in this comparison trap, the mantra I try to remember is, when in doubt, create. After all, why burn precious creative calories protesting the injustice of somebody else’s success when I could be making more art? Why beat myself up over a colleague’s accomplishments that have little or nothing to do with what I’m uniquely suited for when I could be executing my next great idea?
If it’s true that the more uncertain about who we are or what we have, the more automatic and persistent our comparisons become, then making more art is the only thing that’s going to make us feel better. When in doubt, create. Because impossible to feel sorry for yourself when you’re making something new.
Don’t let comparison stop your positive forward trajectory. Comparison is a futile game with no winners. Try channeling the energy into a productive direction, and you’ll never be disappointed.
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How would your life be different if all the comparing was replaced with creating?
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