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Comparing Yourself To Others

How often when you hear about some other person , do you enter into a self made competition with them?  Why do we always have to be better than or, worse yet, worse than somebody else.  Often when I hear good news about somebody else I automatically enter myself into competition with them.  I hear it is wonderful “so and so” lost so much weight and I think that is more weight than I have lost recently and it’s a “downer”.  I wonder if this person now weighs less than I do.  It is a matter of winning  or losing.  Maybe  I originally wasn’t  even thinking about losing weight but  now I am.  Who turned someone else’s accomplishment into a competition?  I did.

rp_7297340494_bbd50a8706_m.jpgYou are reading the Alumni news from your school and you realize you have gotten no where in life when you compare yourself to other people in your class or to all those who also had the same major as you.  Does your heart race or do you gasp for breath when you realize there is a competition going on and you might be losing.  How about when it looks like you are winning.  Who are you happy for the person whose good news you are reading about or yourself if you have done better than that person?

What is more important the goal or the process.  Should you feel that if you have not published a number of books in your life time, you have not been successful,  or is it more important that you enjoyed writing the book and you were writing about something that you felt was important.

This is not always true in other countries where what you do is considered part of a group effort and the group’s goals are more important than the individual’s.  It is your contribution to that not your individual achievement of a personal goal that is important.

Worrying about how I am doing and comparing my accomplishments against some kind of scale can take the enjoyment out of life,  Back when I was a child, I remembering enjoying participating in a team sports even if I was not one of the best players and therefore, one of the first players picked .  There was always  an atmosphere of enthusiasm and excitement and a rush that continued after the game was over even if you didn’t win.

Competition can lead to creativity but I can remember getting so “high” doing a project that in the creation  of it that I lost rack of time and the need to satisfy the basic needs for such things as food and sleep.  I had no guarantee that I was going to win or fear that I was going to lose but I was inspired and so immersed in what I was doing that I forgot about anything else.

Being so competitive can lead to anxiety if you don’t always win at everything.  I used to have to win all the games at a bridal or baby shower. I had to have the only “A” in class.   I really wasn’t a good winner, let alone loser.

The “rush” to judgment I can still feel today if I don’t stop myself and ask myself why I am being so competitive.  Why can’t we all be the best that we can be still remembering that the end doesn’t always justify the means.. success-churchill-550x240

Consider children in a family, can the success of one to mean the failure of another?  Brains, beauty, physical abilities, is there only enough to go around for one person only in a family to be considered to have it.

Can there be only one daddy’s girl or mommy’s boy or grandpa or grandma’s favorite.  There is a shortage of something here.  Is there not enough admiration or love to go around?

Competition can sometimes lead to increased effort on the one hand and the other hand it can lead to decreased effort if there is not enough attention, pride, fame, and money to go around.  Have you ever given up at something because of this?  I didn’t realize until I got out of high school that beauty often comes from knowing what to wear and being able to do your hair and makeup and knowing you look good, and having the self confidence that comes from this.rp_KUWtK_titlecard.png

It also took lots of time and effort.  Creating the look, checking out what was in style, and finding it.  Also girls had power over one another in this area and those who were on top often stayed that way by making sure that other girls would lose their position at the top of the heap.

I found out that I could look good when for a special occasion I had my hair and makeup done and had on attractive, stylish clothes.  I also learned later in life that those girls who I thought had it made often were not as confident as I thought they were and often spent a lot of  time dieting, picking out  clothes, and doing their hair, makeup and nails to maintain their “look.”  Being constantly judged like this was stressful for them and they were not always as self-confident as I thought they were.

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