Stop Comparing to Create a More Joyful Life

posted by Aby Garvey on August 27, 2014 6 Comments

Comparison is the thief of joy. |

A friend of mine shared this quote on Facebook last week. I’ve heard it before, but it’s the kind of quote that bears repeating—and sharing—especially today.

Today it’s easier than ever to compare ourselves to others. The internet and social media provide ample opportunities to see inside people’s homes and their lives. Comparison is a natural consequence. It’s important to remember that what you’re seeing, and what you’re comparing, is just one slice of a person’s life at one small moment in time. Let’s say a friend or favorite blogger posts pictures of her freshly organized closet. What you aren’t seeing is the starting point, or the hours of work that went into creating that result. You’re simply seeing the finished project. (You won’t even get a chance to see the laundry hamper fill up and start to overflow in the upcoming days! But it will!)

If comparison is stealing your joy, try one of these ideas to create a more joyful life.

1. Go on a comparison hiatus. Step away from the internet, or take a break from social media. Use the time you save to do something you enjoy and do well.

2. Focus on your own progress. If you’re in the process of working toward a goal, make sure you have a means to track your progress every step of the way. Track miles run, pounds or inches lost, or bags of items donated to charity. Acknowledge and celebrate every step of the way.

3. Remember you’re only seeing a small piece of the big picture. If you do find yourself in a place of comparison that is making you feel badly, remind yourself that you’re looking at someone else’s finish line. You might even be seeing a perfectly crafted (and edited) photo of a finished project, captured in just-right lighting. You aren’t seeing the effort and energy that was put into creating that result.

4. Focus on gratitude. When you find yourself making comparisons to others, turn your attention to gratitude. What are you grateful for right now? What is working well in your life? What are you doing right?

5. Recall past successes. Finally, focus on your own successful past. Recall your own personal victories and triumphs. Remind yourself of past goals you’ve achieved and obstacles you’ve overcome.

Soon you’ll be seeing yourself as the rock star you really are and feeling the joy you deserve to experience.

Has comparison been getting you down lately? Do you think you’ll give one of these ideas a try? Thanks for sharing!



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