The day I stopped caring to compare myself to others is a day I do not distinctly remember. However, I do remember wanting to stop because all comparing did was make me feel unhappy. That unhappiness either triggered depression or workaholism to earn more money to buy more stuff. Neither state was healthy for my family or me.
My loss of appetite for comparison was akin to a gradual disinterest in something. Over many months, it simply went away. As I reflect on it, what’s really interesting is that it was not a goal of mine, i.e. I did not state, “By April 2023, I want to stop comparing myself to others.” Instead, I focused on changing how I think, transforming my mental state. By incorporating daily Morning and Evening Rituals, I experienced a mental shift of beliefs that abated my hunger to compare. Eventually, I stopped craving it altogether.
No single thing has affected my happiness more than this. By eradicating the obsession to compare, I was freed from the mental prison that had my joy behind bars. I was blind, but now I see all the blessings of my life.
Some of these blessings are not necessarily “good” things, but they are constructive corrections rooted in love. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but it produces a harvest of wisdom and peace for those who learn from it. Whether good or corrective in purpose, I am grateful because everything works in harmony for my ultimate benefit.
One of the side benefits of this new mental state is that I am also freed to be happier for other people. I no longer begrudge what they have, but am genuinely happy for them. In fact, I would argue you can not be genuinely happy for anybody else unless you kill the comparison “weed” at the root. It also seems like this is what empowers each of us to love our neighbor as ourselves.