How to Get Out of The Comparison TrapApr 14, 2022
Are you stuck in the comparison trap? You see how everyone is so much further ahead than you, more sorted, busier, richer, and the list goes on. Measuring yourself against others will leave you feeling stressed and stuck.
Comparing yourself will stop you in your tracks and cause you to procrastinate over taking the necessary steps to build your thriving holistic business.
If you recognise this in yourself – STOP! There’s no point comparing yourself to others, especially when you don’t know the facts. And yes, we all do it, but it is a sure-fire way to feel bad about yourself, and your situation.
Recognise you’re making assumptions
Ultimately you make assumptions and compare yourself to others’ best bits. These are the edited version of their life and business, not their reality.
You don’t know where they are in their life, you’re believing the stories you're making up. You don’t see what they’ve gone through to achieve what they’re doing, or the work they put in.
Most of the time, the people or businesses we compare ourselves to are years ahead of us. They would have gone through the learning process and the mistakes to be where they are.
Why would your starting point, look the same as someone who has been working for 10 years? They had to start somewhere and that’s exactly what you need to do – get started.
This has happened to me on more occasions than I want to admit, and it was a huge problem for me at the start of my career. There was a time when I believed that I couldn’t write - well anything worth reading. Working in marketing meant I spent a lot of time with proofreaders and writers, and I found myself comparing my meagre copywriting skills, with their well-honed ones. With practice, I’ve improved my writing and with that, my confidence has grown and I’ve even written a book – who’d have thought it???
How to escape the comparison trap
Be aware of your traps
Recognise where you’re staying stuck by comparing yourself to others. Become aware of the stories you tell yourself and do a reality check to understand what’s really going on here.
Look at who you’re comparing yourself with and think of them as an example of what’s possible - use them as inspiration to keep you motivated.
If you need help with this, check out my blog and podcast on creating a thriving mindset.
Unsubscribe and unfollow
Go through your emails and delete and unsubscribe from those lists that aren’t serving you. Do the same with your social media accounts - disconnect from anyone that you're measuring yourself against in an unhelpful way.
These are the people you’re comparing your business to or those that leave you feeling like a failure or anything else that's not useful. This is very different from reading emails from people who inspire and support you.
Focus your efforts
Review your vision for your business and your goals and make a commitment to yourself about what you want to achieve. Write it down and display it where you can see it to remind and reinforce what you want. Or even better, tell someone who will help to keep you accountable.
Work out what your priority project is that will move you towards your goal and focus on this, don’t try and do everything at once. Create a simple plan of action and focus on taking your first step towards what you want to do.
And each time you complete a step, celebrate it no matter how big or small, this will help you to keep motivated and stay on track.
Work on your mindset
Work to build your confidence in the areas where you compare yourself. Make reflection and gratitude part of your day, and recognise what you've achieved and how far you've come. A great way to do this is by journaling as it will give you something to look back on.
Make friends with yourself and get comfortable with your quirks. Identify anything specific that you unfairly compared to others and recognise it’s you who’s being sensitive, others are unlikely to even notice.
When I did my first podcast series, I hated the sound of my voice and I had an inability to pronounce certain words (much to the delight of Claire, my podcasting partner). At first, I was very sensitive to this, but as time went on, I learnt to accept this quirk, and laugh about it too. It didn’t stop us from getting thousands of downloads and attracting clients to our door.
Surround yourself with supportive people
Surround yourself with people that reinforce what you want to achieve. Make sure you keep the company of like-minded people who will support you and help you thrive. A great way to do this is to get a business buddy, join a mastermind group or get a coach-mentor like me to support you.
Constantly comparing yourself to others will keep you stuck and stop you from doing the important work that you want to do. If you’re struggling with this and to find clients, book a chat and find out how I can help you.