Comparison is the Thief of Joy
By Amanda Galley
Let’s face it, even the strongest and most confident of us will compare ourselves or our business to others. Doesn’t everything look better when you’re watching the movie montage version? You can’t see the hours and late nights poured into a project, the missed moments lost to obsessing over things you overlooked, details, or conversations. When I’m feeling overwhelmed by my own propensity to compare, I think about a statement I heard about social media feeds:
“Stop comparing your game tape to everyone else’s highlight reel.”
Athletes and sports fans know that game tapes are learning ground where you see everything, especially the most embarrassing/painful/irritating errors and fails. But that’s the most valuable information which drives growth and improvement. It gets you to the goal. Comparing our reality to our competitors’ highlights is a zero sum game.
In preparing to write this post, I was worried that comparison might be a bit too far off the path for a business blog. Nope. Turns out we’re all human and have the same tendency to compare ourselves or our business to others. Like any activity that involves our brains, we have to figure out how to manage it, below are a few tips and some extra reading to help.
- Focus your efforts on your business. Dedicate your thoughts and actions to achieving your goals and not someone else’s. A wise woman once told me not look over my shoulder; it’s simple and powerful advice.
- Know your triggers. If scrolling through LinkedIn gets your mind in a loop of comparison, minimize your time on that site. Observe yourself and know when you’re leaning in too far.
- Define your strengths and draw from this knowledge to create confidence during moments of weakness.
- Understand your goals and what they mean to you and your business. Make a list and make it easy to access when you need a reminder to stay on your path.
- Don’t always buy into the hype. Guys, we’re marketers. We’re really good at presenting ourselves. Trust your gut, you know the difference.
The following articles also offer guidance:
- Stop Comparing Yourself to Competitors. Start Perfecting Your Craft. by Matt Mayberry
- How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Other Business Owners (And What to Do Instead) by Taylor Gordon
- Six Reasons to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others by Anna Dower
Take a minute to look inside and understand where you expend your energy. Comparison doesn’t serve you or your business. It only takes your precious time which can be spent making amazing things happen.
Credit to Theodore Roosevelt for this month’s headline