Use comparison for growth

Our heart is like a garden, we can grow happiness, fear, compassion, anger, sadness or any kind of mixed feeling we want to. What matters is our way of approach towards life. If we are cornering it to an isolated and lonesome being, then we are bound to get unhappy with our lives. But if we are welcoming it with open arms and bracing ourselves for the future, we will be creating huge prospects for our well-being. Comparison is something that most of us are subjected to. We do it at some or the other point of our lives. Be it the marks one scored in the semesters or the job one hands over after graduating, comparing our lives with our friends and foes alike have started to become an integral part of our lives. We cannot imagine competing without having to compare anything or anyone. Our targets are set by the number of competitors that we have or the big achievements they have scored. Although comparing oneself with others is not a healthy practice and the life instructors are strictly against this habit. But a little bit of comparison can work wonders if you are doing it with the right guys at the right time and with the right magnitude. Once Buddha said, if your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete. The conventional self-help wisdom practices against using comparison as a tool to measure one’s strengths and weaknesses. But it is also a means to find out our niche in this world.

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Usually when we compare ourselves, we find it as an unhealthy way to compete, and then we would stop doing it. The problem with the people is that they compare on an ego basis. The perspective is not to look the lacking in oneself but to judge others of their weaknesses. This type of comparison brings negativity and does not benefit anyone involved. We are neither able to improve ourselves on those grounds nor do we feel good about the person we are comparing ourselves to. Comparison is good to the extent that we are benefitting our lives with the positive thoughts. But as soon as we start to gratify the ego attached we start to feel ashamed of us and jealous of the other person. In order to get closer to what ego has to offer in this matter, take an instance. One of my friends, who were not a dropper, had got admission in one of the top notch IIMs of India. She was sharing her interview experiences with me and elucidating them with full expressions and thoughts. To an extent, I was involved in her talks and getting myself engrossed in what she had to say. But when she started to overdo it, I started feeling envious. I thought to myself I have not even completed my graduation and this girl has big plans for her post-graduation. She has already chalked out everything in her hands and is ready to take on the future with full zest and confidence. I could hardly bring myself to question her anything apart from her interview. Throughout our conversation, all I could do was nod and smile at her. After coming back home, I analysed where I went wrong in my life. I have been working my rear off to ace through life but in vain. Especially after what I learnt about her, I started to demean myself and could not think clearly. After thinking a lot about it, I finally came to a conclusion. Out of my ego, I could not ask her how she cracked the test and what techniques she had adopted to prepare for the common admission test. My ego came in between my urge to learn and the courage to ask her. I could not beat my ego and as a result I was feeling bad about myself. I was comparing on futile grounds and letting my ego take control of myself.

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Whenever we notice that uncomfortable feeling rising in our self, we must make a quick decision. At that point we have two choices to in our hands. Either we give in to our ego and start to think ill will of the other person or we go ahead and ask our self where am I going wrong and what all are the things that I can do to learn from this guy? If we are able to inculcate this little piece of advice we will definitely be learning a new thing every day keeping apart our unnecessary egoistic plans. View the comparison as an opportunity to learn rather an excuse to overburden your self-esteem. When we compare ourselves to others, it is usually because they have something that we do not, or they are doing something that we have always wanted to do or if they have reached the highest pinnacle of success that we always been dreaming of arriving at. I say, life goes on and we have a dozens of choices to make and many opportunities. Comparing just for the sake of it will yield nothing more than loss of faith and trust in oneself and the belief in others. Hence compare to grow and inspire yourself daily rather than feeling inferior about the way you live.

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