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5 Things You Need To Stop Comparing To Lead A Better Life

5 Things You Need To Stop Comparing To Lead A Better Life

We all do it. We look at someone and instantly compare how we measure up. This is done so often and quickly that we may not even realize we are doing it. Whether we realize it or not, it affects us. By constantly feeling that we don’t measure up, we affect our confidence which affects how we deal with everyone else in the world. Here are 5 things you need to stop comparing to lead a better life.

Keeping up with the Jones’ Can Get You Into Debt.

Whether it’s a neighbor, a friend, or someone you wish you were friends with, everyone knows someone who seems to have the latest and greatest thing. Maybe it’s a car, tablet, phone, fitness gadget, or clothes. Some people feel pressure to keep up whether or not they can afford it. Perhaps your friend is excited about her new phone and asks when you are getting one. Or maybe you feel pressure to have the latest fashion for work so you feel up to date and more desirable to clients.

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In some cases you really do need to spend some money on new things. There are many ways to keep the spending under control though. You can shop in high end consignment shops, choose items that look like they are from top designers but aren’t, and look for sales. It’s not necessary to pay top dollar. It doesn’t make you seem any better just because you spent an extra $50 on a blouse.

In other cases you really don’t need to spend the money on stuff. If you spend what you cannot afford, you are adding stress to your life. Save the money you might have wastefully spent. Less stress equals a better life!

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Feeling Down About Your Body Makes You Look Bad.

Here’s a secret. No matter what you look like, if you exude confidence then you are instantly more attractive. By confident I don’t mean arrogant. Being confident, happy and yet humble override any physical attribute. That includes the people who are perceived as pretty or handsome. If they have a bad attitude, they instantly become unattractive.

You are a beautiful human being with so much to share with the world. Life is too short not to experience as much as possible. Go out, be happy, and have fun!

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Being The Head of a Company Doesn’t Make You a Better Person.

Some people judge their worthiness, as well as other people’s, by the rank of their employment. They chase perceived greatness while missing out on so much around them. I’ve seen some of my friends climb the corporate ladder in exchange for time with their kids, friends, family, and health. I’ve seen them get sick due to stress and not looking after themselves properly. On the other side of the fence, some of my friends have been confident in what they need to be happy. It usually isn’t very much. They have time for tea with friends, and work in jobs that have a lot of personal satisfaction. They are happy and healthy!

Butterflies vs Wall Flowers:  Both Have Great Qualities!

Social butterflies seem to be the life of the party. Wall Flowers have deep, meaningful relationships. These are generalities, of course. Some people can be social butterflies and also have deep, meaningful relationships. Some wall flowers can be brought out of their shell in the right setting. The point is, both qualities are great! Be confident in who you are. You might start off as an awkward, shy little kid and eventually surprise yourself as you grow into a confident, somewhat outgoing adult. That is how I would describe myself. Having had the pleasure of experiencing both sides, over the course of my 40+ years, has been enriching. I always considered myself extremely shy and wished I could be outgoing and not care so much about what people think. My friends never considered me shy at all! How interesting! Once I stopped caring about what people might think of me, I felt liberated and free to be me!

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Everyone Else’s Family Seems so Normal.

Growing up watching family television shows planted a seed in our minds as to what is normal.  Every generation had its shows.  There was ‘Leave It To Beaver’, ‘Little House On The Prairie’, etc.  Every kid started comparing their family life to what they saw on TV and we felt something was wrong or missing in our families.  It’s too bad because the truth is that there is no normal.  Every family has its issues whether they are openly visible or not.

Stop Comparing. Celebrate the differences. Liberate yourself and lead a better life!

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Jennifer Wasylenko

Exercise Physiologist, ACSM

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Last Updated on April 8, 2020

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Why Assuming Positive Intent Is an Amazing Productivity Driver

Assuming positive intent is an important contributor to quality of life.

Most people appreciate the dividends such a mindset produces in the realm of relationships. How can relationships flourish when you don’t assume intentions that may or may not be there? And how their partner can become an easier person to be around as a result of such a shift? Less appreciated in the GTD world, however, is the productivity aspect of this “assume positive intent” perspective.

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Most of us are guilty of letting our minds get distracted, our energy sapped, or our harmony compromised by thinking about what others woulda, coulda, shoulda.  How we got wronged by someone else.  How a friend could have been more respectful.  How a family member could have been less selfish.

However, once we evolve to understanding the folly of this mindset, we feel freer and we become more productive professionally due to the minimization of unhelpful, distracting thoughts.

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The leap happens when we realize two things:

  1. The self serving benefit from giving others the benefit of the doubt.
  2. The logic inherent in the assumption that others either have many things going on in their lives paving the way for misunderstandings.

Needless to say, this mindset does not mean that we ought to not confront people that are creating havoc in our world.  There are times when we need to call someone out for inflicting harm in our personal lives or the lives of others.

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Indra Nooyi, Chairman and CEO of Pepsi, says it best in an interview with Fortune magazine:

My father was an absolutely wonderful human being. From ecent emailhim I learned to always assume positive intent. Whatever anybody says or does, assume positive intent. You will be amazed at how your whole approach to a person or problem becomes very different. When you assume negative intent, you’re angry. If you take away that anger and assume positive intent, you will be amazed. Your emotional quotient goes up because you are no longer almost random in your response. You don’t get defensive. You don’t scream. You are trying to understand and listen because at your basic core you are saying, ‘Maybe they are saying something to me that I’m not hearing.’ So ‘assume positive intent’ has been a huge piece of advice for me.

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In business, sometimes in the heat of the moment, people say things. You can either misconstrue what they’re saying and assume they are trying to put you down, or you can say, ‘Wait a minute. Let me really get behind what they are saying to understand whether they’re reacting because they’re hurt, upset, confused, or they don’t understand what it is I’ve asked them to do.’ If you react from a negative perspective – because you didn’t like the way they reacted – then it just becomes two negatives fighting each other. But when you assume positive intent, I think often what happens is the other person says, ‘Hey, wait a minute, maybe I’m wrong in reacting the way I do because this person is really making an effort.

“Assume positive intent” is definitely a top quality of life’s best practice among the people I have met so far. The reasons are obvious. It will make you feel better, your relationships will thrive and it’s an approach more greatly aligned with reality.  But less understood is how such a shift in mindset brings your professional game to a different level.

Not only does such a shift make you more likable to your colleagues, but it also unleashes your talents further through a more focused, less distracted mind.

More Tips About Building Positive Relationships

Featured photo credit: Christina @ wocintechchat.com via unsplash.com

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