How Not To Compare Yourself To Others


How-Not-to-Compare-Yourself-to-Others
I came across this great post by Eden Riley today,Β In Praise of JOMO.Β It talks about the fear of missing out (FOMO) in today’s online world where everyone shares the great things they are doing in their life and how you should turn this fear into JOMO, the joy of missing out instead of comparing yourself to others.

The comparing bit is one that I completely relate to and in fact, for weeks and weeks I’ve had a ‘blog post ideas’ list that I put together and one of the points I wrote was:

It is so easy to compare your life to others but you don’t know how someone got there.

You know the story. You sometimes find yourself comparing your house to other peoples houses or the holidays they go on, the car they drive, the clothes they wear, their social life and in my case I will admit, I compare my blog to other blogs and have felt like throwing in the towel numerous times. Thanks to Facebook, people are always sharing updates on these aspects of their life every day.

I remind myself…

The thing is, and what I try to remind myself when I fall into the comparison trap, you really don’t know how someone came to have these things, or if they’re even happy behind the facade. Comparing yourself to others actually starts being a form of you judging yourself, and that’s just not cool.

You don’t know what’s happening behind the scenes

Perhaps someone has a really nice house but what you don’t know is if they’re struggling to pay the mortgage, perhaps they inherited money? Perhaps someone you know just went on a lovely holiday to Europe which you envied, but how do you know they didn’t accumulate a huge credit card debt to do the trip or that their parents helped them to pay for some of it? The same goes with nice clothes and other material items.

And when it comes to comparing blogs (or small businesses) you just don’t know how they came to where they are now. You don’t know if the person had another blog or business from where much of their audience came from, you don’t know if a lot of money was invested into their website design and promotion as opposed to you doing yours all by yourself.

All my blogging and writing work is done when my toddler is asleep which means I am very limited with my time, but what I have done with my limited time I am proud of. I only have one day a week when he’s in kindy where I can focus on my writing and don’t have the luxury of grandparents to look after Elliott during the week…my parents all work full-time.

But, when my mind gets off track and I find myself comparing my blog to others, I try to snap myself back by remembering that bigger and more successful blogs and/or small businesses out there probably have lots more time than I do and either don’t have kids, they have school aged children or are able to have their children cared for more often. Of course, they would be able to achieve lots more than I can at this point! The other thing is money, if someone has the financial means to outsource work whether it’s a small business or blog, well then they will always be one step ahead.

Stop the vicious cycle

In the big scheme of things, comparing yourself to others really doesn’t do you any good at all, the only thing it’s good for is making you feel inadequate, it’s like a vicious cycle. In comparing yourself to others, not only do you not know the behind the scenes details of a person, but you are comparing yourself to someone that’s had completely different life experiences and has walked a completely different path to you. It’s most certainly better to focus your energies on being the best version of yourself and putting measures in place to do so.

I’m definitely guilty of having made comparisons but I try to make an effort to be mindful of these negative thoughts and redirect them towards a focus on what I have achieved on the path I have taken so far in my life. I hope this post has inspired you to redirect your thoughts too so you can embrace Eden Riley’s theory on the Joy of Missing Out.

Eva Lewis (The Multitasking Woman)

Eva is the Editor and Owner of The Multitasking Woman - a lifestyle and parenting blog.She always has her fingers in many different pies but wouldn't have it any other way. Eva is a Mum to her 4-year-old son, 2 month old daughter, two chickens, one dog and a fish called Bob and a wife to Mr G. They all live happily in their little cottage on the outskirts of Brisbane.

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31 Comments

  1. Lucy @ Bake Play Smile
    June 23, 2014 / 6:27 am

    Oh so true Eva!! I think I’m getting better at not doing this the older I get. But it is hard not to compare yourself to others at times, thats for sure!!!! xxx

  2. June 23, 2014 / 7:29 am

    It’s always a tough one, I know I’ve been guilty of it in the past as well. We never really know what goes on behind the scenes or in the background of other peoples lives.

  3. June 23, 2014 / 7:51 am

    Yes it’s a trap we all fall in to from time to time but as long as we keep a check on it and don’t let it be the reason why we are upset or down then being aware of others isn’t always a bad thing. There always has to be someone first, second and third! As for blogging, it’s a tough one. I usually write mine late at night after I’ve spent all day with 2 boys under 4 and in between paid work and my daughter’s school stuff. I envy those with all day to devote to their blog! Just keep doing what you’re doing, it’s great!

  4. June 23, 2014 / 8:47 am

    Oh yes, I completely understand. A part of the reason I started my blog to begin with is to write about the bad days as well as the good and to show that women/mums can be vulnerable and feel insecure and unsure. I was finding I was spending too much time on my personal Facebook account watching people “act out” perfect lives and it got me down wondering why did they cope so well with motherhood etc etc and I didn’t. I did the same, I stopped and thought about what lies behind closed doors and no ones life is perfect so we mustn’t compare ourselves to others as we don’t know what could be going on in their lives. Then some just do it to make you feel crap but that’s ok as long as you have the right mindset nothing can bring you down. Focus more on your self than others is the way I am thinking these days. By the way you are doing an amazing job with your blog. I aspire to have a great blog with lovely followers like yours one day πŸ™‚

  5. Suzy Mac
    June 23, 2014 / 11:07 am

    The day-care & pre-school run used to freak me out – all those designer mums in their Mercs, B-mers and Porche SUVs. hair and makeup perfect, skinny little bums wiggling along in snug designer jeans.(the mums and their kids). Now we’re at a lovely public school where there’s a greater socio-economic mix of families and some days I feel overdressed. Maybe some parents even think I’m a poser; I’ve got a skinny wiggling bum now and my hairs just been done – but this has everything to do with marital stress. (lost appetite and turning grey in two months and the only jeans that I can hold up I bought years ago. before baby and when I had my own income).
    So Eva I think you’re absolutely right, we can make some pretty inaccurate assumptions about people

  6. Bubfriendly Winnie
    June 23, 2014 / 11:38 am

    An extremely beautifully written post Eva! Thanks – I think all of us need this reminder once in a while! Reading your post reminds me of a Dr Seuss quote -” Today you are you, that is truer than true, there is no one alive who is YOU-re than YOU! This comparing self with others thing I am guilty as charged as well. Just recently, a friend of mine just started a blog and within days she has hit 300 likes on FB and I felt like I have really failed because I’ve had my blog earlier than she did and I do not even have that many supporters on blog! πŸ™ Sometimes I wonder whether it’s because there is something wrong with my blog or my writing – I know I do concentrate a lot on product reviews but I love doing that and that is what my blog has started off as and that is what I would like it to be. I am also guilty as you mentioned of the others as I am a SAHM mom to my kiddies but also work part time so that really leaves me with little else – especially blogging – I only get to do maybe one or two posts a week, some weeks NONE! As for you ever doubting yourself Eva, please don’t! I really enjoy reading your posts and I really look up to your blog and your success and hope that some day I can reach where you are in terms of blogging! xx

  7. June 23, 2014 / 1:31 pm

    I love this Eva! It was so lovely to meet you today xx

  8. Barbie Bieber Beyond
    June 23, 2014 / 1:38 pm

    Love it, I find myself comparing myself to others all the time, maybe it’s a little bit of an insecurity on my part, maybe a little bit of the green eyed monster….something I am working on, thanks for hosting a great link up again.

  9. June 23, 2014 / 5:02 pm

    Very wise words! I used to compare my blog to others a fair bit I think without even fully realising I was doing it, but these days I’m much more relaxed about it and i just appreciate the support and connections I have made through blogging. Like you, I have very limited time to blog and can only do so when my bub is sleeping. I’ve accepted that I can’t post as often as I want to and hardly have any time for social media and that’s okay with me. My attitude now is that blogging should be a source of joy and that when it doesn’t feel like that anymore that I need to shidt my perspective back to a healthier place. I always like the honesty of your posts and the variety of the content that you blog about … so keep doing what you’re doing cos I think your awesome. xx

  10. June 23, 2014 / 10:09 pm

    hi! I’m new around here – and I’m so happy to have found your blog! It’s funny, but I think a ton of people must be thinking about this topic of comparing themselves to others lately (read a lot of posts on it). And I totally agree with them! This is something I do continually and it’s SO hard to not… For me, we live in Italy and most of our friends have money. Not just money. But MONEY. Castles. Private planes etc. We have an apartment – that we rent – haha. But I can easily see the things in their lives that aren’t so great. In blogging – you only get the one side of the story!

  11. June 23, 2014 / 11:43 pm

    Thank you for hosting! πŸ™‚ Blessings!

  12. June 24, 2014 / 2:58 am

    Thanks for the link-up! I pinned it. Have a great week!

  13. Susan Maccarelli
    June 24, 2014 / 5:11 am

    Thanks for doing this link-up. This is my first time participating and I am looking forward to checking out some of the other links!

  14. June 25, 2014 / 2:06 pm

    Hi Madaline, welcome! I can definitely see how that would be difficult, but as you say, there are things that aren’t so great and I’d much rather be happy than have lots of money!

  15. June 25, 2014 / 2:16 pm

    I honestly don’t know how you do it with 6 kids, I struggle with just one. But I’m pretty sure there are plenty of readers out there that think your blog is awesome and really look up to you. πŸ™‚

  16. June 25, 2014 / 2:29 pm

    Oh Winnie, thank you. And do you know what? You definitely shouldn’t compare your blog or doubt it, you are doing exactly what you enjoy doing and that is so much better than blogging about things that you don’t. I love all of your giveaways, you do such a good job (where on earth do you find them all?)

  17. June 25, 2014 / 2:55 pm

    I totally agree with there has to be someone first, second and third…that’s just life, isn’t it? And all day to devote to a blog, that would be a dream!

  18. June 25, 2014 / 10:27 pm

    At the Kidspot Masterclass I went to in April it was said “Comparison is the thief of joy” and it’s so damn true. The only person I try to compare myself to is me. I know what I am and aren’t capable of and the only person I have to live-up to is my own expectations. As soon as I start to compare myself or my situation to others it starts to do my head in, so I have just had to stop it all together. Great post lovely! xx