We’ve all been there – late at night, lying in bed, frantically Googling, “How do I stop comparing myself to others?” The comparison trap is real, and it can be utterly exhausting. But fear not, because I’ve got a four-step plan that will help you break free from this self-destructive habit once and for all!
What Is the Comparison Trap?
The comparison trap is like a sneaky habit we all have sometimes. It’s when we keep looking at others and thinking we should be just like them to be happy. This blog will talk about how this can make us feel bad about ourselves and give tips on how to stop comparing and feel better about our own journey. Whether you’re comparing in your life, work, or online, this blog will help you feel good about yourself.
Step 1: Get A Picture
First things first, pull up a picture of the person you’re comparing yourself to. Whether it’s their body, their dreamy house, or their envy-inducing lifestyle, get a visual representation on your phone screen. Now, let’s dive into the next step.
Step 2: Reality Check
Take a moment to reflect. Ask yourself, “What would it take for ME to have that body, that house, that lifestyle, etc., that I am envious of?” If you’ve been following them for a while, you probably know a lot about their life. Consider the hours it would take for you to spend in the gym, the sacrifices you would need to make, and the effort you would need put in. It’s easy to say “I want that” without considering what it would take for YOU to get that. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows.
Step 3: Pen to Paper
Time to get it down in writing. Physically list out all the steps it would take for you to get where they are. Writing it out makes it more tangible and allows you to see it from a different perspective. Be thorough; don’t hold back.
Step 4: The Clarity Test
Now, it’s decision time. Ask yourself, “Would I be happy doing all of this to become what they are or have what they have?” Be brutally honest with yourself. Sometimes, we might admire a destination but not enjoy the journey. If the answer is no, you’re comparing apples to oranges. And that’s perfectly okay!
Maybe that lifestyle, that body, or that achievement isn’t what would make you happy. Realize that you have your own path to happiness, and it might not look like theirs – and that’s more than okay. In fact, it’s fantastic! You’ve identified what truly matters to you.
How Do You Stop Comparing Yourself to Others?
So next time you find yourself scrolling through Instagram, comparing yourself to someone with a “perfect” life, pause and remember this process. You might just find that their life isn’t what would make you the happiest, and that’s a beautiful realization to embrace. Comparing yourself to others? Not anymore.
Must Read Books To Break Out Of The Comparison Trap
Just so you know, I do review everything I recommend. When you buy through links on this page, we may earn a commission.
Untamed by Glennon Doyle
For many years, Glennon Doyle denied her own discontent. Then, while speaking at a conference, she looked at a woman across the room and fell instantly in love. Three words flooded her mind: There She Is. At first, Glennon assumed these words came to her from on high. But she soon realized they had come to her from within. This was her own voice—the one she had buried beneath decades of numbing addictions, cultural conditioning, and institutional allegiances. This was the voice of the girl she had been before the world told her who to be. Glennon decided to quit abandoning herself and to instead abandon the world’s expectations of her. She quit being good so she could be free. She quit pleasing and started living.
The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck by Mark Manson
⚠️ Trigger Warning: spicy language and some weight talk
There are only so many things we can give a f**k about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.
The Courage To Be Disliked by Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga
A thought-provoking self-help book that explores the profound teachings of Alfred Adler through a unique Socratic dialogue. It delves into the principles of happiness, relationships, and personal growth, challenging conventional beliefs and encouraging readers to embrace their individuality with courage and wisdom.
The Mountain Is You: Transforming Self-Sabotage Into Self-Mastery by Brianna Weist
This is a book about self-sabotage. Why we do it, when we do it, and how to stop doing it—for good. Coexisting but conflicting needs create self-sabotaging behaviors. This is why we resist efforts to change, often until they feel completely futile. But by extracting crucial insight from our most damaging habits, building emotional intelligence by better understanding our brains and bodies, releasing past experiences at a cellular level, and learning to act as our highest potential future selves, we can step out of our own way and into our potential. For centuries, the mountain has been used as a metaphor for the big challenges we face, especially ones that seem impossible to overcome. To scale our mountains, we actually have to do the deep internal work of excavating trauma, building resilience, and adjusting how we show up for the climb. In the end, it is not the mountain we master, but ourselves.