Posted in Faith, Life

The Comparison Trap

No more looking back

Comparison, I’m coming to find, is the ultimate stumbling block in our own success and maintaining perspective.

I’m not just talking about comparing yourself to your peers and counterparts. I’m talking about comparing yourself to your ideal life and what you dreamed/thought your life would be at your current age when you were younger. We all have those dream lives that we had planned out as kids or teenagers.

I can tell you right now, at times, my current life looks nothing like I dreamed it would be as a kid, and it often leaves me unfulfilled [as far as ideal location and career goes ] but it’s no reason to beat myself up about it. It’s tempting to compare my ideal life to my current life, instead of problem solving and making the best of my situation now. It may not be perfect, at times I find myself disappointed & feeling like a failure, when I know that my track record proves that I’m far from that. I just am not where I thought I would be.

Comparing your ideal life to your current situation, often causes us to forget how much we’ve accomplished thus far. Even if you feel as if you’ve accomplished nothing, it is most likely not the case.

Perhaps you aren’t where you thought you would be at your age. That’s okay, not many of your peers are either. You’re not alone. A delay is not a denial, a detour is not a deterrent. No path is ever straight in life.

We’re definitely not the first generation to encounter trials and tribulations in our formative adult years. Things may not be how you thought they would be, but comparing your ideal life to your reality might be one of the worst things you can do. 

Resist the urge to compare. Enjoy the ride, hills, bumps, detours, curves, u-turns and all. At the end you’ll overcome, and maybe even have an awesome story to tell. If you do nothing else, celebrate all that has happened up to this point. Celebrate the fact that you’re a first generation college graduate (or maybe you’re continuing the great tradition of higher education in your family or proudly serving our country). Celebrate joining the workforce, even if it’s not your dream job. It’s a stepping stone. Celebrate your personal growth & coming into your own as an adult. Celebrate life as it is now, what is to come that is unknown, and try to avoid the comparison trap.

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Author:

A thirty something city kid from the midwest (born, raised and educated in Ohio!) Urban/Higher Education professional, I love supporting schools and organizations in their efforts to educate urban youth and young adults. I'm also passionate about helping young adults find their purpose and live it out! I'm constantly growing and evolving. I'm a mom to a brilliant active little boy, a proud member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Incorporated, and I'm ready to change the world, one life at a time!

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