In today's interconnected world, comparisons have become a constant presence in our lives. We often find ourselves comparing our own lives, bodies, relationships, and achievements to others, leading to a detrimental impact on our self-esteem and overall happiness.
This article explores the harmful effects of comparisons, why being your competition is essential, and how to break free from the cycle of comparison.
Illusion of social media
Social media platforms have become breeding grounds for comparisons. Scrolling through carefully curated feeds, we are bombarded with images of seemingly perfect bodies, relationships, and lifestyles. However, it is essential to remember that social media often presents an idealised version of reality. The images and posts we see are carefully selected and edited, showcasing only the highlights while concealing the struggles and imperfections. Comparing our lives to these glossy, filtered representations is an unfair comparison, as we don't truly know what is happening behind the scenes.
Comparisons: The thief of joy
Comparisons have the power to steal our happiness and create unnecessary suffering. When we compare ourselves to others, we often focus on their strengths and accomplishments, while fixating on our shortcomings and failures. This skewed perspective leads to feelings of inadequacy, self-doubt, and a diminished sense of self-worth. It is crucial to recognise that comparing the worst of ourselves with the best of someone else is an unfair comparison that only serves to erode our happiness.
Instead of constantly comparing ourselves to others, we can turn inward and ask ourselves, "What does the best version of me look like?" By setting our own standards and striving to meet them, we become our own comparison and competition. Each day, we can reflect on our actions and intentions, aligning them with our vision of the best version of ourselves. This approach is not about egoistic superiority but rather an egocentric focus on personal growth and self-improvement.
Authenticity and gratitude
To retrieve reality and uplift our self-esteem, we must choose authenticity over comparison. This means acknowledging that everyone has their journey and struggles and that we are all imperfect beings. Instead of comparing ourselves to others, we can focus on personal growth, setting realistic goals, and finding fulfilment in our accomplishments.
Practising gratitude is another powerful tool to counteract the negative effects of comparison. By cultivating gratitude for what we have, we shift our attention away from what we lack and develop a deeper appreciation for our unique circumstances and strengths. Gratitude helps us recognise that our worth is not determined by how we measure up to others, but by the contentment and fulfilment, we find within ourselves.
In a world filled with comparisons, we must remember that true fulfilment lies in being our own measurement of success. Embracing our uniqueness and striving to be the best version of ourselves is a Instead of focusing on comparisons, focus on personal growth, and pave our own path towards genuine happiness and contentment.
(Luke Coutinho, Holistic Nutrition and Lifestyle – Integrative and Lifestyle Medicine, Founder of You Care - All about YOU by Luke Coutinho)