Let’s get real here, there are times when even the best of us find ourselves comparing our lives to someone else’s…and it sucks. Doing things like this don’t boost your self-esteem or magically make you more of a go-getter, they can actually tare you down. My stepdad told me this:
“It’s a dangerous game to play because you’ll end up chasing them every step of the way.”
I get caught in the trap of comparing myself to other people a lot. It’s been a year since I graduated high school and, already, some of my peers have their own stores, successful blogs or YouTube channels, internships, you name it. They’re basically out there conquering the world. What am I doing? I’m stressing out about how I’m going to pay for books next semester. Yeah, it’s a pretty glamorous life I’m living.
Chasing someone else’s timeline, or thinking that because they are at this point in their lives that you should be at that point as well, will mean that you will always be chasing the person in front of you and not your own goals and aspirations. The point is: that’s someone else’s story. If you continually compare yourself to them and chase their tails, you’ll be forgetting that your life follows a different path and that you have your own story to tell.
It’s so easy nowadays to check your social media accounts and see people chasing or living their dreams. It’s even easier to feel inadequate in comparison to those people. But here’s the thing, when that starts happening, you start to doubt yourself.
I’ve been blogging on and off for two years now and there are times when I feel unsatisfied with my viewership, posts, whatever. I go from already feeling down about my personal endeavors, to logging onto social media and seeing my old classmates advertising for their new podcasts or earning internships with great businesses. Just basically being all around successful people. That’s when I start to think, “And I can’t even get solid viewership on my blog.”
Yeah, it sucks, and I allow myself to start thinking that I’m not good enough, or that I should be where they are at this point in my life. It can honestly get pretty discouraging. Those are the times when I start to doubt if blogging is really right for me–sort of like a, “What’s the point,” ordeal. All of that doubt stems from comparing myself to other people–people whose end goals look completely different than mine.
Beyond just doubt, comparing yourself to other people can make you feel that nothing you do is ever good enough.
When I look at my blog stats, there are days when my viewership is unexpectedly high, and there are days when I have zero views. It hurts to see that all the work I do on my blog is rewarded with days of zero views. What sucks even more, is on the days when I have new viewership highs on my blog, I still think that those views aren’t good enough. I don’t even give myself the satisfaction of applauding my work because, in comparison to someone else, it’s just not good enough.
There are also times when I come across bloggers who have been blogging for maybe three months, and they already have more followers than me. For someone who has been blogging on and off for two years, those stats are pretty saddening. However, instead of saying to myself, “You’ve been blogging on and off for two years. Those people are obviously dedicating more time to growing their blogs. Don’t be so discouraged,” I say the exact opposite–“You’ll never have a successful blog,” or “You’re just not a likeable person.”
Sure, there are people who have really magnetic personalities and build up followings seemingly overnight, but that doesn’t mean that what I’m doing isn’t just as good. If I have to work harder then so what! I’ll work harder. The point is, by comparing myself to someone else, I started to see even my successes as disappointments.
Comparing myself to others is a trap I get caught in all the time, and it’s one that I am ready to get out of. Maybe you’re the same. If you are, it’s time that you, and I, both start realizing that our time is going to come. Whether it be tomorrow or two years from now, we will see our dreams materialize before our eyes. Here’s some advice, not only to you, but to myself for when those times arise:
- Stop chasing everyone else before you lose sight of you.
- Stop doubting yourself.
- Learn to bask in your own victories, no matter how big or small.
- Don’t give up on yourself. Your time will come.
Keep these things in mind next time you feel yourself wishing you were walking in someone else’s shoes. I’ll see you guys next Thursday, and, as always…
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