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In our culture a lot of times people advise us to compare ourselves with
others. "You should be like your father," "You can win; the others arenít as
good as you," "You must be the best of your class," etc., and this is not always
the best way of thinking. There are many reasons to change this way of thinking
and begin to compare ourselves only with ourselves. This is the way it should
be, and in this paper I will discuss some of the most important reasons for
The first reason to avoid comparing yourself with others is that there will
be always someone better than you. It doesnít mater in which aspect, but it is
always true. Therefore, you could feel inferior to others and maybe without a
real reason. For example, you can be an incredible architect and the best of
your generation, and this can make you feel incredibly good, but if someday
someone is better than you are, you could feel sad although you are still the
same incredible architect that you were before.
The second reason to elude this kind of comparison is that you will always
find someone worse than you, but as opposed to the first reason, this can make
you feel better than the others, and this feeling can turn into a horrible
pride. For example, if you are the second best student of your class, and one
day the very best student leaves the school, you will then be the best one
although you are still only as good as you were before.
These two first reasons leads us to a third one: If you want to be better
than the others, you donít need to improve yourself; you only have to make the
others look bad. If I want to be the leader of the group, but you are the leader
now, what I need to do is to make you look like a traitor or stupid and then I
can take your place. Then I will be better than you.
A fourth reason to stop comparing ourselves is that the one who compares
him/herself with others is judging, and this doesnít help us develop as human
beings. Nobody knows the internal reality of the other; nobody knows his/her
story and his/her most deep intentions, and when we judge itís harder to accept
The last but most important reason to avoid comparing ourselves with others
is that when we do, we can be tempted to copy them, to do the same things, and
to act and think like them. The problem with this is that if we copy someone, we
will never know who we really are and what we really want, and then we will
never grow spiritually.
For all these reasons and because we are unique, we should not compare
ourselves with others, only with ourselves. The only comparison pattern that we
really have is our consciousness. So, if we use this pattern we will not feel
less or more than others; we will not try to make others look bad; we will not
judge so much; and we will accept ourselves as we really are. In other words, we
will live happier.