My Two-Step Process To Stop Comparing Yourself

This weekend a podcast on comparison from my friend and colleague Tonya Cornileus reached out and grabbed me by the lapels.

You see, I’ve heard my whole life that I compare myself too much, the implication being that it’s a bad thing.

Which only makes me feel worse.

What Tonya said is that comparison is normal. We compare to understand ourselves and to appreciate others. For me this was eye-opening. As a child of immigrants, I did a lot of comparing to understand where I fit in. Suddenly it was okay.

Where it gets tricky is when we let comparison make us feel “less than.”

Years ago I wrote a blog about what I called “Frankenwoman” — one friend is super successful, another one has lots of money, another one is in great shape, another one is so self-assured, another one never fights with their spouse, has kids who listen and skip through life, etc…

We don’t compare ourselves to whole human beings. We only compare ourselves to their strengths.

And if you’re honest, that composite looks pretty scary.

If it doesn’t stop you in your tracks, it sure can take the joy out of things.

There’s another thing we do that I’ve learned about more recently.  

We deny ourselves the feelings that emerge from comparison.

Comparison can very naturally bring up feelings of resentment, jealousy, fear, insecurity, and disappointment.

If you let shame push those feelings down, they grow in power.

So what’s the solution?

In her podcast, Tonya suggests awareness. First, know your strengths and weaknesses and love them all.  

In the Impact module of I to the 4th Power, I use the Social Style to teach how each of us brings strengths to the table. So instead of trying to be a perfectly round ball, you can be a puzzle piece that brings value to the whole because of your unique features.

Basically when you feel the comparison gremlin, having awareness of what you contribute can create balance. Go further to consider the whole person you are comparing yourself to, and you may realize you’re happy with your own combination of strengths and weaknesses.

Next, face your difficult feelings, just for a moment. It’s amazing how much power they lose.

Once those ’negative’ feelings lose their power, it becomes easier to see how another person’s strengths are a sign of what you may be wanting.

Maybe you want more balance, or you want the courage to go for the next level of success, or you want more connection. 

With that awareness, you can shift into the inspiration that can help you grow.

Whatever it is for you, remember that managing comparison can leave you feeling deserving, more generous, and more at peace.

My best,

Tifin Dillon - Use Astrology for Your Leadership Style

Isabelle Steichen - Millennial Free Agent

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