How to Maneuver the Comparison Epidemic

I decided to have a different conversation with myself today after I saw this posted on Instagram –

“Don’t compare your Chapter 1 with someone else’s Chapter 20”

I absolutely agree — I say, and have said this, to clients, to myself and in speaking events…..

Then I had a thought. What if their chapter 1 is so much better than my chapter 20? Does this mean I am writing — reading — or compiling my life with the wrong books, documents, resources, and philosophies.

Possibly…..I mean, think about it. We often have to decide if it is time to switch tracks, take a break, reeducate, reach out, or let go.

I am definitely not an advocate of comparing ourselves to others….but as of this weekend I caught myself in the throes of a fever- pitch. So today — when I saw this — I reflected on my feelings. I met a woman my age that was almost the most badass 46 year old I have seen. Upon finding out we would be competing against each other nationally I retreated to the nearest corner. I know — not my usual style.

Her Chapter 1 is definitely gaining on my chapter 20 and fast. After a few self-loathing conversations with myself and some close friends I snapped out of it. But the question is still legit. Don’t you think?

There is a fine line between never giving up and beating your head against a wall.

I believe that this may help us all figure it out.

  1. We all have our own unique definition of success and we cannot forget that. You may enjoy beating your head against the wall — the endorphin rush heading to the wall, and the party after may be exactly what full-fills you — quite possibly it is never your full intent to get over or even through the wall… and…this is ok.
  2. Here is the flip side of this — If you are bruised, bleeding, crying — wrapped in bandages and needing pain-meds- there may be a problem. If you dread the approach to the wall, and feel like a failure at every non-successful attempt — then perhaps you are reading the wrong book and you need to find a new Chapter 1. This is also ok — and can be quit a refreshing revelation.

Personally, I have decided that I enjoy the approach to the wall and although frustrated with the occasional wound and need for pain meds, I look forward to the after-party that comes due to the effort, regardless of result. So for now — I am reading the right book for me.

My Chapter 20 may not be as fantastic as someone else’s Chapter 1, but — I am completely fulfilled and content with my own first 19 Chapters and am prepared to complete my novel — in the matter of my choosing. Bleeding, bandaged, and eventually partying, as I climb up and OVER that wall.

Written By: Staci Boyer