Have you ever noticed how in today’s society, we rarely celebrate the person who comes in second place? We see this most obviously in sporting events. In sports, the winners are treated like war heroes, and the losers are lucky to get five minutes on the screen (and they are usually on the blooper highlights). The announcers may interview the loser first, but the main focus is on the winner (who gets a much bigger check and a much bigger endorsement). And be honest: the only people who remember finalists are parents and the fans who keep up with stats better than their checking accounts. Do we ever hear people screaming, “We’re Number Two!” at games? Does anyone wave a foam finger showing a peace sign instead of a solitary finger? Um, no.
Don’t go kidding yourself that this just happens in professional or high profile sports, Cupcake. This happens everywhere. In spelling bees, automobile commercials, dog shows, and retail, there is only room for one. Even in the neighborhoods where I walk my dogs, I see signs proudly displaying “this month’s best lawn winner!” with no indication of who may have had the second or third “best lawn” for the month. Sheesh.
So, society has created yet another negative message: if you aren’t the absolute best at what you do, you are a failure.
This is a nonsense. I mean it. This is a lie. Think about this for a moment. It’s not enough that we are comparing apples to oranges; we don’t even know who’s an apple and who’s an orange. The worst part? Often,
the best isn’t good enough; people always want more.
And who’s the judge? When rating automobile,s do the insurance companies look at the same things as Consumer Reports or Edmunds? When looking for doctors, do all people look for the same thing? What about a realtor and a new home? What about clothing brands or stores? What about dogs? Who’s the judge? Who’s the apple? Who’s the orange? Have I made enough of a point? I’m going to assume yes, and continue. If you need more convincing, email me.
Ways to Stop Comparing Yourself Apples to Oranges
- Quit thinking like apples and oranges. You are not an apple or an orange. You cannot think like an apple, or an orange, or any other fruit. You are you, with your own cupcake flavor, your own cupcake frosting, and your own cupcake… Click To Tweet If you compare yourself to someone
else, you will always lose. You will always find something she does better; her fashion sense, her earnings, the food she cooks, or even the brightness or the perfect shape of her teeth. Admire her for her awesomeness, but admire yourself for your awesomeness, as well.
- “Whatever you choose to be, be a good one.” Abraham Lincoln had this right. Do your homework, get busy, and be your best version of whatever you choose to be. Your authenticity will resonate clearer and stronger, and this will bring better people into your life or business. So, Cupcake, what do you have to lose?
3. Follow your compass. Figure out exactly what you want, then do your own research. How many times have I said this in previous blogs? My neighbor is happy to drive thirty miles to visit his vet, because the doctor is completely wonderful and my neighbor has been with him through ten dogs and two cats. Thirty miles is way too long for me to travel with a sick dog. I want the vet who will treat my Alaskan malamute (not all of them will) and who is closest to my home, because if any of my dogs suddenly get ill, I want them in
professional hands as quickly as possible. It doesn’t matter what your friends, neighbors, or family wants; get their advice if you want it, but if something matters to you, then you need to find and own your choice, Cupcake.
- Make every moment perfect for you. Choose to have the perfect week, the perfect night, the perfect day, or the perfect moment in time. I give this advice on the courts: “For as long as you live, there will always be someone better than you, you will always be better than someone else, and each day the ‘someone’ will change. The trick is to find out what you can do well enough to win that day.” They don’t have to have the perfect serve or the perfect backhand, but if they can figure out how to win, they had a perfect mindset for that moment in time. You are the way you are for a reason. My advice is to embrace yourself—all of yourself--and use… Click To Tweet
- Ask for help when you need it, and be willing to help others. Help is a unique gift all on its own. When we help others, we have the opportunity to share our gifts with others. When someone helps us, we are given the opportunity to show appreciation when she shares her gift with us. Both giving and receiving raise energy vibrations, which promotes more good feelings. Remember this when you hesitate to ask for help; just by your request, you are honoring that person. People are honoring you when they receive your help, as well.
- Sometimes, it is not about you (yes, I have said this before, because IT IS TRUE). One time, a client told me, “I can say the same things you say” as he dismissed my services. Technically, this was accurate. You, dear reader, can say exactly the same things I say when I teach (though not with my awesome Texan accent). For that matter, so can an 8-year-old. But can you say the right thing at the right time? At first, his comment hurt my feelings (and seriously bruised my ego) and then it made me furious. We parted ways on good terms and handshakes. Later, I realized there were other things happening that had nothing to do with my “inabilities.” It was simply time for us to part ways. They still smile and hug me when they see me. I love them dearly, and I am always grateful for free hugs!
- It is inevitable that someone will disapprove of your endeavor. It is inevitable that you will disapprove of someone else’s endeavor, as well. Do not take any of this personally; you both are doing something in a way that does not fit into each other’s paradigm. If you can find it in your heart to forgive the attack on your ego, and find it in your heart to show compassion for her, you will find it easier to continue on your path. Just remember she is also on a path, and it will be different from yours. This is not a competition. You are not an apple. Or an orange. Neither is she.
- You are always changing. If you can look yourself in the eye in the mirror (try it, right eye to right eye, or left eye to left eye) and say truthfully, “This is the best I can do. I have given everything,” then you are the best that you can be at that moment. Tomorrow will be different. The day after tomorrow will be different, as well. Can you say this to yourself each day? As long as the answer is “yes,” and you are honoring your gifts, you are on the right path. Celebrate yourself, your gifts, and be joyful that you can be such a wonderful person! Click To Tweet
You are not an apple or an orange, so do not think like an apple or an orange. Think like you. Be the best you possible each and every day, and remember how wonderful and unique you are. There is no such thing as “not good enough,” wrong place, or second place. There is only one place, and it would automatically be first place. This is where you belong, no matter what anybody else says.
What are some things you do when others compare you, and you “lose?” How do you overcome this? Feel free to share, as you may be helping someone else reading this, and you are sending out a karmic boomerang!
As always, let me know how it’s going, and stay frosted!