Re-framing Comparison Into Motivation

By 8 August, 2020Uncategorised

  Underrated but Educated

 Underrated but Educated: The musings of Emily Jackson and Phoebe Tweddle and their experiences through the perilous journey of growing up.

In 2020, it’s almost ‘the norm’ to catch yourself absentmindedly succumbing to the scroll. You know the one? Those minutes that become hours, the cramped right thumb, and the inevitable hole of comparison that we begin spiralling into.

Being social animals, consciously or not, we instinctively compare ourselves to others. To varying degrees, we often measure a short novel’s worth of aspects of our lives in relation to others; be it status, wealth, occupation, physical appearance, luck, intelligence, or the newest matching loungewear co-ord set. This destructive method of comparison, however, offers next to no benefit.

But comparison doesn’t necessarily have to be the death of joy – it can be a powerful motivator when consciously used as a tool for self-improvement. Call this ‘reframing comparison’, if you will. Reframing comparison instead allows us a way to look to others for motivational guidance, as opposed to simply feeling envious that we don’t have a private jet to fly us to the Maldives at our every convenience. When we are stripped of emotional reaction, full of intent to learn and grow, with a genuine happiness to see others succeed, this is when true growth occurs.

We witnessed this ability to grow from others first-hand whilst completing our final years of high school. Two friends fortunate enough to share every single class together, combined with some unparalleled (and slightly over-the-top) expectations for our (redundant) OP results, pretty much sounds like the perfect recipe for some ripping-out-hair-extensions cattiness. Remarkably so, for us, this equated to some healthy accountability and the internal momentum to influence one another and bring out the best of ourselves. One person’s success was not met with the insecurity of the other, it was met with the will to be better and to succeed in turn. We were able to achieve this cohesion by bringing conscious awareness to the comparison trap, paying attention to our feelings of envy, and instead channelling that energy toward ambition.

The success of others does not negate our own success, contrary to what our subconscious and the works of social media might suggest. Success is entirely subjective and there will be no shortage of it anytime soon, so next time you find yourself a victim of the scroll, seek inspiration, not self-deprecation.

 

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