Are you often checking activities of other people and trying to copy them, or asking yourself questions like why am I not doing that?
Welcome then my friend because we are here to discuss just that today! Involuntary comparison of oneself is a healthy habit that most of the individuals have in their life., but healthy of course till a certain point only. Let’s see how
How do we measure success?
While most individuals measure their success by parameters set by others and try to ace their own goals, most of us are caught up catching and re-creating a stale idea that was well fed to us via today’s digitally smart world. We see so many influencers who are doing really well in life, earning a good six-figure and leading the lifestyle that most people dream about, yet somehow we end up comparing ourselves. But why do we do that in the first place? The comparison starts from the unfulfilled desires of one’s mind, just imagine your mind like a mirror in the harry potter movies, “The mirror of Erised”, you are the harry who just wants to find happiness, and the mirror shows you what you don’t have. Be it a great job, money, fame or that sizzling hot body.
Everyone wants that extra oomph in their life, which they can brag about with delight because let’s face it if it takes time to get to a position that great, everyone would want to flaunt it.
This bug of measuring our achievements with others, Is fed to us since childhood. Somehow here the parenting factor comes into play. The typical “Sharma Ji ka ladka” joke is famous and a suitable instance in this case, but is that all?
Is there a history?
Our great mythological stories about the ideal men and women living in old days and the code of conduct personal or professional are itself illustrated to set an example for the coming generations to follow their path, to constantly compare ourselves to them and follow their footsteps. Ram in Ramayana was the most ideal man who ever lived, the Pandava’s fought the great battle of Mahabharata not for vengeance but, for the greater good. But these are all carefully laid out plots that depict only their good behaviour. But was it really all good? Imagine someone’s stepmother declining the heritage to one of her husband’s child, well for all I know the next conversation they would be having will be in the court of law, also think a man gambling his wife and four brothers for some stupid game and losing it, and then not fighting to free them but taking a long 12 years to grieve and keep his word! Preposterous isn’t it? Now I know people will say that was a different time, but time never changes for women and truth. Sita, followed ram even though she knew it would be difficult to adapt to an ascetic lifestyle and Draupadi was shamed, both because the “ideal men” could not break their conduct. But what are we supposedly taught from these stories is, be rightful. Be loyal and never sin.
But these ideal men and women did sin!
The whole agenda to these stories is to compare only to the good parts. Because no one shares the faulty ideologies. After all, didn’t Lord Krishna say that different times need different rules? Comparison incurs a milestone set in our minds that help us determine how high our success should be and how low any doom can be.
So what is a healthy comparison?
If you don’t regret the decisions you have been making yourself all these years, that’s healthy comparison. If you don’t pity yourself for being in the place you are looking at someone’s fancy Instagram pictures, then that’s healthy comparison. If looking at other achievements, makes you want to work harder to be able to influence and inspire people then that’s healthy comparison. It is when you accept that even the most successful people are flawed, yet they have achieved something by constantly working for it. Nothing is one-night fame, and if there is it doesn’t last long.
What is an unhealthy comparison?
Now that we agree to the comparison being the necessary evil, we must determine what’s in it that should be avoided.
Avoid comparing your journeys! It is only logical if we make decisions based on the path we are already working in, rather than seeing someone taking a different route. Who loves popcorns? Everyone does right, ever made some? Each kernel pops at its own time they are in no hurry to pop all at the same time. Something similar works for us too. Eventually, in life, everyone gets to the point when they feel content with what they have achieved because we are working for it, but seeing others pop in their careers and beating yourself harder cursing your luck, is not healthy competition.
What they don’t tell you?
No one will share their blues on social media. All of them will share only what’s going to make them look happy, steer in a wave of jealousy amongst others, and also some political opinions. But think, is it right to compare yourself with them, because you are absolutely fine where you are. Yes, you are not there yet and you desperately want to get there, but mimicking someone else’s life choices will only drag you away from your “Popping Period”.
So I think you get the gist, keep tabs on yourself only until it drives you positively to work harder where you are, and not change your entire course of action so far.
Something you have been practising for years is more powerful than practising many things for a year. Scattered energy is of no use remember?
With this note, lets bid farewell, until next time!