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“Comparison Is The Thief Of Joy” – Theodore Roosevelt

Social media is agog with a lot of people who take out time to share their achievements with the outside world. However, these achievements most times are fueled by competition and not passion, interest or motivation. Many people are always forced to believe erroneously that success is fueled by competition. Hence, they always want to accquire what others have at all cost. In the end, they find out that the cost of maintaining such things they struggle to accquire is beyond their means.

A friend of mine told me a story of two men who lived in a small and sleepy community. Success in that community was measured based on life’s luxuries. For the sake of clarity, let us name the men as Jack and Robert. Jack was a rich man who had several investments which formed the basis of his wealth. Robert on the other hand was a high school teacher who was paid by the government. Having seen the lifestyle of Jack, Robert felt he wanted to be known addressed as a rich man too. He continued continued borrowing from one end to the other to the extent that his wealth overtook that of Jack. Soon the was regarded as a very rich man and was ultimately crowned king. This was unknown to many that his wealth was borrowed. When time came for him to pay the loans he had collected, he was unable, and in the end, he was disgraced, dethroned and sent on exile from the community.

Let me be clear with this that success achieved through competition is always short-lived when compared to success achieved through restless struggles, perspiration and motivation. Now then question is this: “WHY DO PEOPLE ENGAGE IN UNHEALTHY COMPARISONS”? From my observations, humans engage in unhealthy comparisons for a plethora of reasons. These could include:

Firstly, a lack of contentment. From personal experiences, I have observed that a person who lacks contentment, will end up disappointed. This is because he never finds satisfaction in the little he or she owns, and that is the reason he or she keeps struggling to achieve what others have achieved. This in the end fuels jealousy, envy and hatred.

Furthermore, the desire to belong and not be left behind is another reason. This makes people hide under several covers of pretence and end up living a fake life. At the end, they become bitter, dejected and disappointed.

You can avoid unhealthy comparison by putting into practise the following:

  1. Endeavour to engage in constant gratitude. This shifts the focus of the mind from things not in stock to things in stock.
  2. Celebrate people’s achievements genuinely and never be envious or jealous of others.
  3. Understand the fact nature has allotted each individual’s time zones differently. Hence, what is today, might not be tomorrow vice versa.

Conclusively, understand that no athlete was ever rewarded for running on another’s lane no matter how fast he might end. And like someone said “face your process and let your biggest competition be your former self”


I wish you luck in your race for success. Do outline your opinions in the comments and keep sharing to others.

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