“I don’t compare myself to anyone else. I just want to be better than the person I was yesterday.”
This is one of those statements that sounds good on the surface, but is harmful when it comes to success (whatever that means to you). Comparing yourself to other people is necessary if you want to be more, do more, have more, and contribute more.
Without a point of comparison, you have no idea how you’re doing. Do you do excellent work? How do you know? How can you know without a point of comparison?
Do you have impeccable character, the kind of values that make you someone people want to work with, want to know, and want in their life? How do you know what impeccable character is without knowing what it is not?
How are you doing with your family? How about your health? How about financially?To define how you are doing, you need some way to measure where you are.
The risk in trying only to be better than you were yesterday is that maybe you aren’t doing well enough for that to be a useful measurement.
When you compare yourself, you get an idea as to where you fall on some scale of measurement. Without that comparison, you would not know what’s possible. Without making observations as to how other people are doing, you don’t have an informed idea of what is possible for you.
Have you ever met someone and thought, “If that person can do that, so can I?” Exactly. You just needed to see it done, recognizing that the person succeeding in some area is really no different than you. Or at least the version of you who is willing to strive.
Comparing what you are doing to what other people are doing can help you develop a bigger vision of yourself.
Measuring your performance against someone else can inspire you to be more, do more, have more, and contribute more.
Watching what someone else is doing and allowing their success in some area to inspire you to take action improves your performance in that area. The comparison can inspire new beliefs, and new beliefs tend to bring with them a tectonic shift in your results like nothing you have ever experienced.
A long time ago, you read biographies of people with noteworthy achievements. You read these books to learn how to be someone of character. Sadly, a lot of what is noteworthy isn’t really worth noting, except as a model of what not to be or do.
In every area of your life, you would do well to have some model against which to compare yourself. Then you have something to work towards and a model of success in that area to act as a guide.
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Filed under: Values