03 Jul Beating the Comparison Trap, with Mitch Matthews
Well, hello there, and welcome to episode 183 of DREAM THINK DO. It’s a deep dive, and that means it’s just you and me diving in deep on a subject that seems to be growing in importance. We’re going to talk about focusing on beating the comparison trap. That’s right. Breaking free from comparison. It’s that thing that can hit us. It’s been around since the dawn of time, but it’s really amped up in this day and age of social media, where it’s so easy to compare ourselves to others. And I asked for your help on this.
- The How of Happiness book: https://amzn.to/2yxUBuv
- 7 Habits of Highly Effective People book: https://amzn.to/2K0UTzC
So we’re going to be sprinkling in wisdom from DREAM THINK DO-ers from around the world. You guys sent in some great insights and I appreciate it. So I’m going to be giving you a shout out as we go. Plus, we’re going to dive into the science of comparison, a little bit of the brain science, but we’re also going to talk through a three-step process for beating back comparison with a big old stick. I think we can all relate to having that negative feeling at some point. So we’re going to be diving deep on the science and the solutions to beating the comparison trap.
So let’s put the hurt on comparison. I want to help you to break free, especially if you’ve ever felt the pain of comparison. Sound good? This is a tough subject. It’s a big subject. I found it fascinating the more and more I dove into it, and I can tell you I’m at the front of the line here as well. It’s something I’ve dealt with myself, and so it was a passion project for me to go after this. You guys submitted some great information, so stay tuned for that. But comparison has been around since the dawn of humanity. I mean poetry, philosophy, scripture, dating back thousands and thousands of years talk about the temptations and perils of comparison.
It’s not necessarily new, but a lot of research coming out to address how we compare ourselves and how we are getting hammered by comparison at new levels because of, and not limited to, social media. For example, a new study published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology found that comparing our lives to others, especially when we do it and see it on social media, it’s playing a big part in the rise of depressive symptoms and depression. Researchers specifically said it wasn’t necessarily the website platform or just the social media necessarily itself that was causing the negative emotions, but more so where the comparison took us in our heads as the result of the content that we’re bombarded with.
Another group of researchers from Humboldt University in Berlin looked at Facebook use. They found that the more time people spend browsing Facebook, the more envious people got. They were able to isolate that emotion and link it specifically to Facebook use. And it is not just limited to Facebook. I’m guessing this doesn’t surprise you. You’ve probably heard about a lot of this research. More importantly, you may have experienced it yourself. You’ve felt that comparison creep in and nail you, zap your joy, make you feel discontent, make you feel less than. And that’s why I want to go after it. And some of what we talk about may surprise you because we’re going to dig into the science of comparison and realize as we do that, that some comparison between yourself and others is good.
That’s right. It’s actually good for you. So we’re going to talk about where comparison is good and where the lines are and where it goes bad. More importantly, I’ll give you some specific strategies so you can overcome bad comparison and live in freedom. You want to break free of this so you can live your best life. And so we’re going to give you the ABC’s, literally a three-step process for breaking free of comparison. How does that sound? I hope you’re excited. I know that I am. I geek out on this stuff. Alright, so first we’re going to talk the science, then we’re going to talk ABCs.
Let’s dive into the science of comparison. In 1954 a social psychologist named Leon Festinger coined the phrase social comparison theory. This is a few years before Facebook, Instagram, and the Twitter, right? So this theory centers on the concept that there is a drive within all of us to gain accurate self- evaluation. How does that sound for a scientific definition? But again, this is way before social media. It’s all of that. This speaks to, again, a drive that we all have to gain self-evaluation and have that be accurate. So Festinger used this theory to explain how individuals evaluate their strengths, thoughts, and abilities by comparing them to other people’s strengths, thoughts, and abilities.
So as long as you stay on the healthy side of this, it can help to reduce uncertainty. How about that? If it goes bad, it can rock all the things that you know about your world, but if you hone in on where the good aspects of comparison is, it’s going to help to make you feel more certain, more secure, more grounded. So this happens naturally, and it’s not necessarily bad. So let me give you an example. Back in the stone ages, let’s say a couple of cavemen are hanging out. We’ve got Ugg and Oark. Ugg and Oark go out to hunt, and as they do, Ugg realizes he’s a better tracker than Oark. And so he may choose to specialize. So they may realize that Ugg’s good at tracking, but Oark, by comparison, is better with the spear.
So in caveman lingo, let’s just say that conversation will go, “Yo, you know, Oark I’ll track them. You spear them.” And they agreed to do that. They become a team, they’re the team to beat, and then at every mammoth hunting contest that plays out, Ugg and Oark, they’re the team to beat. The crowds are cheering. They’re good to go, right? Because they’re specialized and the way they specialized or learned what they were good at was by comparing themselves to each other. Okay, that’s a weird example, but you’re starting to get the point.
Let me give you a little bit more personal example. So from very early on when I was very young, I started to realize something, and that was that I wasn’t particularly good at Math. How did I realize it? When I tried it, I didn’t like. But I also would look around a little bit in class and realize that there were just other students that grasped it easier than I did. Their brains automatically seemed to get it. It seemed to come easier to them, and I noticed it? I noticed that I could pick up on a fraction of what they could grasp. Sorry about the pun there, I just had to work it in. And again, I noticed that. I noticed that with other kids in my class and that wasn’t necessarily bad. In fact, social psychologists would say I was doing something called upward and downward comparisons, so that I could kind of get a grasp of what I was good at and what I wasn’t.
So, as I did, I realized I wasn’t as good at Math as say, listeners Amy and Christie. Here’s the thing though, is that I didn’t spend a lot of time on that. What I did realize is that I was pretty good at telling stories. I could sit and write down a story, and it just seemed to flow out of me. It seemed to come easier to me than others. I might not be good at math, but man I could actually tell a joke once in a while, and people seem to laugh. Or in speech class, even though it made me freakishly nervous, I could get up and hold people’s attention and bring through a point. Maybe I was a little bit better at that than a lot of the kids in my class.
When I look back, I realize I was using what they now identify as social comparison theory to help me guide my life, and subsequently my job choices. Because I knew very early on that if my career, whatever that would be, was going to be dependent on me doing math I was going to be in a world of hurt, right? But if it involved writing or speaking or teaching, I probably was going to be in pretty good shape. And that is healthy, right? In fact, DREAM THINK DO-er Tammy tapped into this in one of her submitted comments: “Comparison is not always a negative thing. It can be a part of the cycle of continuous improvement. Identify attributes, actions, and qualities of others that have made them successful. If you’re a peer is better at facilitating meetings, ask why? What is he or she do differently? Can you apply similar techniques? Ask yourself, what can I learn from him or her?” So thanks, Tammy. That was awesome.
According to a Festinger and the social comparison theory, research started to focus on social comparison as a way of self-enhancement or self-improvement. They looked at these concepts of upward and downward comparisons and expanding on the motivations of social comparison. And like Tammy said, some comparison can be healthy. To ask yourself, “What could you learn from others? What somebody’s really good at? How can that inspire me? What am I good at compared to others? How can I do more of that?” Or if I see somebody doing something I want to do, to ask myself, “How can I do that? What are they doing well? How could I apply that? How can I learn from them?” So that’s some of the good comparison. But comparison can become unhealthy. Princeton University psychologist Susan Fiske puts it this way: “We shift into envy up and scorn down. Envy up and scorn down.” Wow! Those in and of themselves are very descriptive.
So that’s when the healthy comparison turns into jealousy and self-loathing. That’s envy up. On the other side where instead of downward comparison, where you realize you’ve got some strengths others don’t have, or as a result, you start to judge others and feel better about yourself because you feel better than someone else. That’s called scorn down. It might not even be intentional. But in those times when we’re tired, or you’re feeling overwhelmed or spent, it’s just easier to slip into the negative side of comparison. Right?
Let’s take a second and dive deeper here. Think about the times where we’re tempted to go onto social media. A lot of the times it can be good for us. But there are times, I know for me at least, where it’s at the end of the day when you’re feeling a little brain-dead, you’re tired, you think, “I’m just going to pop on Facebook for a second. I’m just going to scroll through Instagram for just a second. I’m just going just flip over here to Snapchat and see what’s up, right?” And your guard is down because you’re tired and worn out. Envy up hits. All of a sudden you start to think, “Uh, I’m behind.” You have this feeling of, “I didn’t even know it was in a race, but I’m behind.” Because maybe you saw a friend post about a big win or somebody posts about a new car, or a new house or a new job.
You weren’t even looking for a new car or a new house or a new job, but because the comparison slipped in you started to feel like you were last place in a race. Right? I mean, have you felt that? I’m guessing I’m not alone here, right? This is a timeless concept, but it’s been amplified because of technology. And this is even more pronounced. This is just one more step into the science here. I want to give you one more term because comparison becomes even more pronounced when we understand something researchers call the comparison target.
A comparison target is this someone who you might compare yourself to. And it may not be at that conscious level initially, it just kind of may sneak in and your brain selects someone to compare you to. Now, the key regarding the comparison target is proxemics. Stay with me here because it’s all going to make sense in a second. So if your comparison target is not too close to you, then the chances of you feeling those negative levels of envy up or the scorn down are diminished.
So for example, you might play basketball. Maybe you played it in high school, and you hear Lebron James’ latest statistics, right? And you might be inspired by them; you might be sickened by them. I don’t know how you feel about Lebron, but unless you have close personal ties, again that proxemics, to Lebron the chances of you feeling deep-seated comparison, or moving into the negatives of comparison are diminished. So unless he’s your cousin, or you currently play in the NBA, the chance for you to experience upward or downward comparison, especially if it goes to envy up or scorn down are really, really small.
But if you see somebody you went to school with post something on social media about their vacation or their new home, or the job they love, the levels of upward and downward comparison can come in like a surprise Tsunami, and nail you before you even see it coming. Again, if the comparison target is closer to you, a classmate, a friend – the closer they are, the bigger the chance for comparison. And whether it’s relationships, wealth, health, achievements, experiences, notoriety or appearance, whatever, pick your marker, if we’re not careful we’re going to get nailed and shift from upward or downward comparison, which can be healthy, and slide right into envy up, or scorn down. That’s the bad news.
The good news is we can overcome it. Research shows this time and time again. It depends solely on how we process the input. Comparison in and of itself is not bad or good. It’s how we process the input. If we process effectively, upward comparison can inspire us to try harder and push us, right? If we can process the input effectively, downward comparison can help to inspire us to feel compassion, or grace, or love.
As an example, this is one of my favorites that anyone submitted. DREAM THINK DO-er Peyton reminded me of some timeless wisdom from the great philosopher and theologian, Meghan Trainor, in her timeless classic, All About That Bass. Let me quote you a few lines: “Because you know I’m all about that bass, about that bass, no treble. Yeah, it’s pretty clear I ain’t no size two, but I can shake it. Shake it like I’m supposed to do. I see the magazines work in that Photoshop, we all know that s**t ain’t for real. Come on now, make it stop. If you got beauty, beauty, just raise them up, because every interview is perfect from the bottom to the top.”
A timeless classic, right? Many of you suggested wisdom along the lines of stopping comparison before it starts. Tina pointed out a quote that she likes. She says, “Don’t compare your life to others. There’s no comparison between the sun and the moon. They shine when it’s their time.” Katie said, “Comparison is the thief of happiness. Once you realize it you are free of the expectations you unfairly set for yourself and you can be whoever you want to be.” Diego said, “Don’t compare your chapter two to someone else’s chapter 10.” I love that. Julian said, “Don’t compare your movie to someone else’s highlight reel.” Said that’s brought him a lot of freedom. Sarah said her favorite quote is, “The grass is always greener where you water it.” That’s an episode in and of itself. We’re going to come back to that.
Patrick and Warren both pointed to the classic Oscar Wilde quote, “Be yourself because everyone else is already taken.” By the way, Patrick, who is also a professional comedian, added this timeless wisdom. He said, “I never compare myself to other people, which is exactly what makes me better than them.” Again, did I mentioned he’s a comedian? So I love those quotes and a lot of great wisdom here.
Here’s what I want to do with the rest of our time together in this episode. I want to help you on those days, those days where you’re exhausted, maybe a coworker was a total jerk. Or your spouse or your roommate gave you that look, and they didn’t even know they gave it to you, but you saw it, you know it, and you’re grumpy because of it. Maybe it’s a post from a friend who’s totally jacked about the awesome day they had at work. Or a photo on the Instagrams of an old classmate who’s excited about the romantic trip away where the clouds part and reveal the never-seen-before waterfall.
We’ve all had the bad day, and boom, we get hit with a negative side of comparison. The comparison trap that steals your joy, the trap that can keep you down for days, weeks, or longer. That cycle of emotion that can lock you up and make you wonder if you’ll ever be able to climb out of it.
And just to be clear, I’m not just talking about you, I want to reinforce that we all get hit by this, I included. I mean, I’ll give you an example. A while back, I had a month of a ton of travel speaking in events, and family stuff was mixed in there. It was a packed month with not a lot of downtime, not a lot of introvert time. And I remember feeling beat, and I was coming to my office on a Saturday morning just to sneak in a little bit work kind of before everybody woke up. And even though it was coming off a busy month, I was just feeling a little down, a little spent, and that exhaustion was going deep, and it was just easier to feel crappy. And I made the mistake of not doing kind of my morning rituals and prayers and reading some scripture, expressing some gratitude. All of those things. Stuff we talked about on DREAM THINK DO. Stuff that’s very important.
But, you know, some days you just don’t do it. And for whatever reason, I opened up my laptop just keeping the bad habits going, and I went right to Facebook, and I started a scroll through Facebook and Whammo, I saw pictures of a friend who just took their whole family, to Disney World. And instantly I got hit with these pangs that my family I wasn’t taking them to Disney this year. I mean, we’re taking a vacation, but it wasn’t as elaborate as Disney, and I just started with that envy up. It started to nail me at those levels of my ability to provide for my family, and my financial wellbeing, my mental wellbeing, the mental wellbeing of my children, the need to provide counseling for them because I didn’t take them to Disney this year. All that stuff.
And I joke, but it’s true, right? And I can tell you; I just went with it. And maybe you can identify with that. The comparison trap tends to sneak in and nail us when we’re not looking when we’re not paying attention and therefore it can kind of linger. Linger for days, sometimes weeks, sometimes longer. And it’s that recent time as well as conversations with others where I just said, “You know, this has got to stop. We need to get some strategies to help in this space. Especially in those days where you’re not your best. Where you feel like maybe you’re missing out, or you’re, you know, you’re just getting hurt by comparison.”
When you get caught in that comparison trap, you don’t love well, and you’re not in the moment. You’re not grateful for what you’ve got. You’re certainly not dreaming bigger, thinking better, or doing more of what you were put on the planet to do, so for crying out loud we need some strategy up in here. So, and it sounds like a number of you DREAM THINK DO-ers could identify with that.
Devin said, “It took me a long time to learn not to compare myself to anyone else, but when I shifted my mindset, everything changed. The more I started to believe in the concept that we all go through the experiences that we are meant to so we become who we are meant to be and to get us where we’re meant to go, comparison just fell away. Don’t get me wrong,” she continues, “I’m a human, and sometimes people have material things that I aspire to acquire, but when it comes to who I am and the person I’ll eventually evolve into, I know that it’s as unique as my fingerprints. No one else in the world has collectively seen everything that I have. Had the conversations that I’ve had, met the people that I’ve had, and lived through the things that I have. So it’s just not logical for me to compare myself to anyone else anymore. Maybe that’s a little too simple, or not what you’re looking for, but that’s how my brain works when it comes to this topic.”
How awesome is that? Devin is right on track. What I want to do with the rest of our time here is to give you the three steps that can help you beat the comparison trap. And because I believe in making things as easy to remember as possible, we’re going to go with ABC. Alright? So the ABCs of beating the comparison trap. Now, these are just three strategies, not the only strategy in the world, but if you remember these strategies, I would care to wager that it might just help you a little bit. So let’s dive into them and then figure out how you can make them even better.
So let’s start with A. A, you may or may not be surprised, is simply acknowledging it. Acknowledging the comparison. It’s recognizing that comparison is happening and calling it out. One of the biggest reasons why I wanted to spend some time on the science, and the research, and equipping you with some of these terms like social comparison theory, upward and downward comparison, comparison targets and the negative side of things and the up and scorn down. Alicia, a DREAM THINK DO -er said she could relate totally. “I’m personally a serial compare-er. The first step is catching myself in the act of comparing and consciously stopping my thoughts from going any further. So when I catch myself comparing myself to others, I remind myself that whoever I’m comparing to also struggles with all sorts of things and I can’t see those things. But I know that they’re there, and it’s not fair to compare.”
“Also, I find that comparing myself to myself helps. I tell myself, ‘If you must compare yourself to someone, compare yourself to the person you were a year ago. Look at how far you’ve come and think about how far you’ll go.’” Alicia, thanks for sharing it.
So the negative side of comparison has power but it has the most power when it happens under our radar, kind of at a subconscious level. But by taking that first step of acknowledging it and realizing it might just be happening, and calling it out saying, “Oh, sure enough, I’m moving into comparison. That’s a little upward comparison. That’s a little downward comparison. Oh, I can see envy up from here. I wonder why that is? What’s my comparison target?
So first step is to acknowledge it, call it out. And sometimes just having the terminology can help you to do that. But what’s the next step? What’s B, right? First step A, acknowledge it. Second, in step B, it stands for boost. Now I can tell you that I’ve been aware of this strategy, but some of your input helped to seal the deal on this. I’ve been prepping this for about a month. I’ve been trying this out, and I couldn’t agree more. But one of the first people to point this strategy out is a longtime friend, and previous DREAM THINK DO guest, Drew McLellan. He offered an example of what I’m talking about with a boost. He said, “When I start to compare myself to someone else and feel the negative side creep in, I feel the best solution is to actively look for ways to help that person, to give him a boost.”
“Maybe it’s an introduction I can make. Maybe it’s a shout out I can offer. Maybe it’s a little encouragement over social media, but in looking for ways to be of service, I realized that I do have some unique offerings. So attributes that reminds me that we both have gifts worth valuing and I often can create a new alliance with someone whose work I admire.” What I love about it is that it’s not rainbows and butterflies, “Always be happy,” right? This is something that can kind of shock your system. Because if you’re trying to change your behavior, one of the best things that you can do is do something simple but profound to shock your system. Now I know a lot of you DREAM THINK DO-ers are just natural encouragers. You’re going to be the first one to offer positive feedback to someone to encourage them, or just smile at them, or whatever. So this may or may not be a shock to you, but I’m guessing in the face of comparison, it very much can be a shock.
I mean, help introduce that new paradigm of looking, in the face of comparison. Looking for ways to encourage someone. Maybe even your comparison target to boost them can make a huge difference. It’s one of those things that researchers agree with this. In fact, many suggest that using social media is a great way to look for ways to break out of comparison. So instead of just scrolling blindly, actually engage and look for ways to encourage someone, or to connect with them in the same way you would on the street. Check-in. Say hello. Say a kind word. Share someone’s post and spread the word about something that they’re doing that inspired you in some way.
Andrew as a DREAM THINK DO-er said, “For me, I’ve learned that comparison is the thief of joy. If we constantly compare ourselves to others, we’re probably going to be let down. I think it’s healthy to learn from successful people, who are probably people who have failed a lot but to understand how to do what you’re doing better….But if we constantly compare ourselves to others, we miss out on embracing the things that make us unique. I’ve found that if you encourage people in their successes, life is just all around better. Don’t you want the people in your life to do well? I think if the answer is no, you’ll never do well either.”
I love that. For some of you encouraging comes naturally. It’s something that you do. But again, the interrupt, especially in the face of comparison can be powerful and a good old shock to the system, especially when you’re acknowledging it and deciding to do something differently. So that can help you to overcome the negative side of the comparison. Help it to stop from kicking in or at least shutting it down. And the beautiful thing about this is that you can do this on social media, but you can do this out in the real world too. As an example, Eric said, “As a leader, I serve my boss, and I serve my team, and when I focus in on that, when I do that, I feel a much less need to compare myself to others.”
DREAM THINK DO-er Adam said, “Try to celebrate other people’s differences, including how amazing it is that we don’t all want or enjoy the same things. If you feel jealous, reach out to that person and acknowledge them for what you believe they have accomplished or achieved. Let them know why you’re feeling so inspired.” Zig Ziglar was fond of saying, “True joy comes when you inspire, encourage, and guide someone else on a path that benefits them.” How awesome is that? And Booker T. Washington said, “If, if you want to lift yourself up, start by lifting up someone else.” You have no idea what other people are dealing with, so no matter what they look like on the outside, you never know what a few kind words might mean to them. It might just stick with them for life. So that’s a boost.
So first you acknowledge, acknowledge it in yourself. “Oh, Yep. I’m moving in a comparison mode.” B, looked for someone to boost. And then C, our last step, C stands for compassion. And that means compassion for others and compassion for yourself. Speaking of others, you never know what someone else is going through. That person may be what the British call a duck, which means smooth on top of the water, paddling like hell underneath, right?
It reminds me of a story. One of my favorite stories I ever heard, the late great author Steven Covey share. He was talking about a time where he was in New York City for a conference. This is the author of Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. He was speaking at a conference, and he snuck away on a sunny morning to just get away for a bit. And he did it early enough that he hopped on the train and almost no one was there. He said it was so peaceful, so nice. He loved New York City in the mornings. And it was a weekend morning, and train stops, pulls into a stop, and a man gets on, and he’s got like five kids, and these kids are unhinged.
This guy crumbles next to Steven Covey, in a train with plenty of empty seats. There are just a few other passengers on this train. But this guy has the gall to sit down next to Stephen Covey on a morning where he’s just trying to get away, right? And Stephen Covey is a parent of many. So he’s seeing this guy completely disengaged from his kids. His kids are running rampant all over this car. One kid runs up and knocks a newspaper out of one of the fellow passenger’s hands. These kids are yelling at each other, playing tag, just being disruptive. Stephen Covey confessed his inner dad was just getting riled. Like, “Could you please do something with your kids?” He just wanted to lean into this guy and let him have it. It was a perfect quiet morning, and this guy and his lack of parenting was just screwing everything up. Man, he just wanted to let them have it.
And he looked over at the guy, and the guy is just hanging his head, and he finally looks up and sees his kids running all over the everywhere. He looks back over at Steven Covey and says, “Gosh, I should probably do something.” And Steven’s just on the verge of saying, “Yes, you should,” and this guy says, “Their mom just died. My wife just died, and I guess they don’t know how to handle it. And I guess I don’t either.” And Stephen Covey just let that sit for a second. He said, “Everything changed.” He said, “You know, I went from judging this guy and being mad at this guy to asking what can I do to help?” And he wound up spending the morning with this guy walking him to his hotel, and taking care of him. Everything changed when he realized what he was dealing with.
And we all are facing something. Obviously, that’s an extreme example, but we’re all facing something. And it’s so easy to judge others, it’s so easy to compare ourselves to others, but sometimes we just need to assume and realize that man, they may be posting big wins on social media, and that’s fine, but that might be because they’re hurting big time. You never know the war, the battles that they have to face, the things they’re up against. Dinette Phillips said, “Don’t compare your insides to somebody else’s outsides.” Plus, doing things to stir up compassion in yourself for others is one of the most powerful things that we can do to stir up our ability to overcome comparison. Right?
Bestselling author and past DREAM THINK DO guest James Whitaker suggested volunteering some time to help people who are less fortunate. He said, “Doing that, it’s so fulfilling to help someone in need to connect with them.” He said, “It stirs up gratitude for the things you have. Plus it gives you perspective.” And I couldn’t agree more, but I think it’s also one of those things where it’s to look around and know that everyone’s hurting in some way, in some ways, it’s bigger in some ways it’s smaller, but you just never know. And to stir up some compassion for others that might help you to be a little bit more open to boosting someone, to be a little bit more proactive, to be a little quicker to encourage someone else. But I’d also say remember to give yourself some compassion, right?
If you’re falling into that comparison trap, there’s a good chance you’re beating yourself up about it. You feel like you’re that last place in the race, and maybe you didn’t even realize you were racing it. So have a little bit of compassion for yourself. Remind yourself that you might not be where you want to be today, but I bet you that you’re better than you were yesterday. And if not, or even if you are, that you’re going to commit to being even better tomorrow. It may not be huge leaps forward, but it’ll be something, you’ll do something intentionally to make yourself better. Right?
In fact, psychologists, Sonja Lyubomirsky wrote the best-selling book, The How of Happiness. She said that “People who are happy use themselves for internal evaluation.” She says that they still experienced that upward comparison we talked about, but they catch it before it starts to move into envy, and have the negative effects on self-esteem. “Instead of comparing themselves to someone else, they intentionally focus their improvement by comparing themselves to their own past performance.” She said, “A happy runner compares himself or herself to their last run, not to others who are faster.” And I’d like to say that as you do that, give yourself some grace. Yes, set goals, absolutely. Work on them, for sure, but don’t shoot for perfection as you pursue them, but instead remember to enjoy the journey, your journey, a journey that no one else is on.
It’s a little bit like what Devin said. The experiences you’re having, the conversations you’re having, the wins and even the losses are your own, and that makes it uniquely you. And you bring a gift in the world that no one else can. When you start to compare yourself to others, it robs you of that, and it robs the world of that. And I don’t say that lightly. Because this is something that really can be harsh. The comparison trap can be rough, but if you’re armed with some tools like acknowledging it, and making sure that the envy or the scorn doesn’t creep in. To beat it back by boosting someone else, and to overcome it by offering some compassion to others and to yourself. I think these are the strategies that we can use together to beat the comparison trap with a big old stick.
Are you in? I hope so. If this helped you at all, if this episode helped you, the ABCs of walking through the science, but also the strategies of beating the comparison trap, will you do two things for me? Will you share it? Share it via email or share it on social media somewhere, and/or leave a quick review on iTunes. That helps us a ton to reach more people, but it also, it makes me feel good. So you can give me a boost today, how about that? I am so grateful that we’re on this journey together. And speaking of journeys, we’ve got some awesome, awesome conversations coming your way. We’ve got some interviews coming your way in the coming weeks. In fact, next week, Howard Berger is coming back to DREAM THINK DO. Howard is an Oscar-winning special effects artist, and we’re going to talk with him about his dream journey since the last visit.
He’s been on DREAM THINK DO, but we’re also going to get to dive into some of the behind-the-scenes of some of your favorite movies. Seriously, some of the stories he told just made me burst out, but also were so enlightening, so much fun to hear about some of these things. But I also had a bunch of questions submitted by you all, and literally got to ask about 30 questions from DREAM THINK DO-ers around the world, so I can’t wait to go there. I can’t wait for you to hear the interview and some of the other interviews we’ve got coming. But until next time, let’s beat that comparison trap together. And as we do, please, please, please keep bringing your particular brand of awesome into the world, because I guarantee you the world needs it. Thanks so much. Talk soon.