How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others: 7 Empowering Ways

“Comparison is the death of joy.” ~ Mark Twain

“Comparison is an act of violence against the self.” ~ Iyanla Vanzant

“Lift others and yourself as you rise above this mess of comparison.” ~ Grace Gealy

Do you wish to be happy?  Of course you do.

Of the several keystones in the foundation of happiness, Self Love is the most critical.

The arch-enemy of Self Love is Comparison.  How do you compare yourself to others? Is it in terms of…

  • Looks/Body image?
  • Age?
  • Money/Possessions?
  • Popularity/Status?
  • Ability/Talent?
  • The mate someone else has that you don’t?
  • Just about anything else?

Now add the word “perceived” in front of all the categories above because the way you see somebody else as being better off than you is merely a perception, not a reality.

However, these perceptions are made into “reality” by a particular world view passed down through generations that says things like:

  • You have to have a certain look and a certain body type to be attractive.
  • You’ve got to have the latest clothes or the newest car to be accepted.
  • You have to have a type-A, aggressive personality to get what you want out of life.
  • You have to be married or partnered to feel worthy.
  • And a whole lot of other nonsense.

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to OthersWe are bombarded with this crap wherever we look by a neurotically competitive society.  If you’re not competing, you’re losing.

Large corporations love to see us scramble to be better than each other because it makes them rich!  Unfortunately, a lot more money is made off of self loathing rather than self love.

You already know this but it still doesn’t make it any easier does it?

I can tell you that I have spent a lifetime comparing myself to others in all the categories above.  Only fairly recently in my life have I learned how to almost completely stop comparing myself to others.

But before we jump into the ways of non-comparison I learned from those more enlightened than I, let’s set the stage just a little bit more as to why there is absolutely no reason to compare yourself to others:

  • You are a unique, divinely created individual. There is something special about you that nobody else has.
  • You are sent here to dispense your own divinely acquired gifts that no one else can dispense. This world of ours needs you to be you, not somebody else, for it to evolve and become a better place.
  • Most importantly, until you love yourself completely by not comparing yourself to others, you will be hard pressed to find complete love from anyone else. Once you love yourself abundantly, you will experience love in abundance.

Sound simplistic? Too good, too easy, or too hard to be true?  Fine.

All I can say is it has worked for me and I picked it up from those I have seen shining radiantly in blissful non-comparison from doing the following things….

Monitor and Manage Your Self Talk

All day long you are having a thought conversation with yourself.  Think about it, are you ever not thinking about something?

What’s damaging to your self-image is when you allow the conversation in your head to go on un-directed.

But what is human nature?  We love to ruminate and obsess over things.  We indulge our less constructive thoughts rather than directing them into constructive thoughts.

For positive change, you’ve got to become ruthlessly self aware of the thoughts that are not making you feel good about yourself.  You must go on a rampage of plucking out negative thoughts all day long and replacing them with positive thoughts that make you feel good about yourself…all day long no matter what.

If you’re not used to doing this, it may see hard at first, even exhausting, but once you get used to filling your head with only good thoughts that serve rather than destroy you, you’ll eventually look back and wonder how you ever let your mind get away with comparing yourself to others in the first place.

How do you replace comparison thoughts with uplifting thoughts?  Well, you can…

  • Listen to uplifting music. Choose music with only inspiring, uplifting lyrics and focus on those lyrics.
  • Listen to positive podcasts or audio books and focus on the words being said by the speaker.
  • Read positive, uplifting books {or blog posts}.
  • Repeat an affirmation, over and over, either out loud or to yourself, until you’re convinced your self-talk has changed direction.

Here is my favorite affirmation that’s been passed down through the personal development community for over 100 years:

“I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious, and happy.”

Sound corny?  I don’t care.  It works wonders if you surrender yourself to belief and self-love. Change the words to personalize it if you wish.

The point is, you must become relentless in recognizing whenever your brain starts comparing you to someone else and change the conversation immediately whatever it takes every single time until it is simply second nature that you are only delivering loving, accepting thoughts to yourself all the time.

Meditation

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to OthersMeditation is neither having a positive or negative conversation with yourself, it’s about not having a conversation at all.  It’s simple stillness and silence.

It’s a reset.  It’s like walking up to a chalkboard with a bunch of squiggles and lines all over it and then erasing all of it.

Meditation is also very basic despite all the extensive books, blog posts, and entire websites dedicated to meditation.

Sure, there are different approaches like Zen meditation, Chakras meditation, brainwave meditation, and so on.  These are all fun to investigate and practice but if you’re new to meditation, here’s all you’ve got to do:

  • Find a quiet spot, or as quiet as possible, where you will not be disturbed.
  • Sit upright but comfortably, in a chair is fine. You don’t have to be cross legged on the floor unless you want to be.
  • Set a timer on your phone or tablet for 15 minutes, or whatever time you can afford.
  • Close your eyes or leave them barely open.
  • Now breathe. Listen to your miraculous breath going in and out, in and out.  Every time your mind wanders, and it will, just focus back on your breathing.

Once your timer goes off, you’ve erased the chalkboard.  Depending on how much you meditate and how much you follow the other suggestions, the squiggles and lines of comparing yourself to others will eventually come back but just know that you can always go back and erase the chalkboard again whenever you want.  If you really want to get down with basic meditation, check out Zen Habits.

Don’t expect anything from meditation at first.  The more you do it, the better it gets.

Eliminate or Limit Facebook

You’ve probably heard this one before, but it bears repeating.  If you are prone to comparing yourself to others, Facebook is just going to put you into a swirling vortex of self comparison.

Facebook is supposed to be a place where people go to share and celebrate what’s going on in their lives but on those days you’re feeling lack in your own life, your friends’ celebration might come across as bragging or self promotion.

So until you’re in a place in where you can sincerely celebrate other people’s accomplishments or perceived accomplishments without the slightest hint of envy or feeling of lack in your own life, it’s best not to rub your own nose in it.

And don’t beat yourself up about envy.  It’s what you’ve been taught to feel in our insanely competitive society.  Acknowledge it’s there, forgive yourself (it’s okay to forgive yourself!), then move on to better thoughts.

Hopefully, you can use the other suggestions on this page so that eventually you can go on Facebook or any other social platform and not feel the least bit “less than” by anything you see.  But until you feel that power and centeredness, go on a Facebook diet.

Love Your “Competitors”

Send loving thoughts to those you are comparing yourself against.  This may sound a bit contradictory to what I just said about Facebook, but let me explain:

Love is the answer to every obstacle you face in life.  If you don’t believe that, nothing else I have to say is going to be of any value to you.

So rather than dwelling on what someone else has that you think you don’t have or think you can’t have: a better body, a better job, more money, more friends, what have you, emit a few seconds of positive, loving thought vibrations through the Universe toward that person you’re comparing yourself against and then move on to something else.

Love frees up energy. Love frees up the log jams in the river of life.  You want the river of your life to flow and not be jammed up. When you begin to love those who irritate you, you begin to love yourself even more.

Gratitude

Be grateful for who you are what you have.  Dwell upon what you do like about your life instead of what you feel is lacking or not good enough.

Look back through the history of your life and you will see that what you really put your attention upon is what you got more of.  I’m not talking about what you wanted or wished for, but what you put most of your mental energy into.

When you feel “less than” somebody else, that is inevitably where most of your mental energy is expended.

So start focusing on what is wonderful, radiant, and special about you and thank God, Goddess, the Universe, Whoever for blessing you with such divine gifts.  Do this enough, and there will be no room for comparison.

Find Your Tribe

How to Stop Comparing Yourself to OthersRemove yourself from people who criticize you and reinforce your own self comparison to others.  If your mother was critical of you, you could at least move out at the age of eighteen or so.

But what about friends?  Do you have a friend who makes subtle, or not so subtle, hints about how you’re not measuring up?  If so, why give your time to this person?

I once had a friend who I greatly admired in the beginning but as time went on I realized our conversations revolved around his possessions or how he was mastering the universe in one way or the other.  As much as I loved this person, I eventually had to remove myself from him.  It just got to be too much.

Also know that people who brag about themselves or criticize you do so out of their own deep seated feeling of not being good enough themselves.

You can give them a chance and let them know how you feel and if they change then you’ve made both of you better off but if they don’t change, move on to those who would rather discuss more elevating matters.

This goes for spouses or significant others too of course.  It’s doubtful you will stop comparing yourself to others when the person you live with is comparing you to others. Extricating yourself from such a situation is a complex matter but for long term happiness, you must begin removing yourself from those who feed you negative energy.

Your mind is a garden which you must tend for a lifetime if you’re going to make it to your last days here looking back with no regrets.  Pulling out the weeds, even the ones you’ve grown attached to, is integral to a happy, fulfilling journey.

So always be looking for the tribe you resonate with most.  The group of people who lifts you up and appreciates you for who you are, just as you are, which leads us to one last suggestion…

Emotional Freedom Techniques

If you’ve never heard of EFT (or Tapping), the short version of it is this:  it’s a cathartic technique of understanding what’s blocking you from moving forward in life and then transforming that pent up negative energy into free-flowing positive energy.

I’ve only recently discovered it myself and although I was skeptical at first, I was absolutely blown away by what an empowering tool it is.

If you want to engage with a tribe of supporting, accepting people who want to help you move past self doubt or self comparison, check out The World Tapping Circle which meets once a week online and is available 24/7.

You can also read a review of my initial experience with them by clicking here .

Here’s wishing you a lifetime of joy, fulfillment, and non-comparison.

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