Be Careful if You Play the Comparison Game

 In Negative emotions

Have you ever made yourself feel sad or jealous by comparing what you have to someone else?  I never really thought I played the comparison game.  I’m generally not envious of other people’s nice houses or new cars.  

I don’t wish for their lives or their things.  However, I’ve recently discovered I do participate in this game, but in a different way than I would have originally thought.

In my current career as a speaker and trainer, I’ve discovered that I find myself envying my more extroverted, outgoing friends who appear to be much more comfortable approaching other people in a group setting and describing what they do with a flourish of adjectives.  Not only am I an introvert that prefers people one-on-one, I’m a scientist, so in my mind any claims need to be fully justified with statistically appropriate data.  This makes it hard to “sell” myself and my abilities.  

What to do?  I know it’s helpful to identify these areas that are challenging for me, but not in a way that creates negative feelings about myself.  That’s the tricky part about the comparison game.  Instead of feeling bad, I need to consider my own special talents and gifts and how I can use them more.  I know I need to find my own path and not try to mimic the paths that my friends are taking by using their strengths.

Do you ever play the comparison game?  How can you appreciate what you have (not always things) instead?


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Tina Hallis, Ph.D. is Chief Positivity Officer of The Positive Edge, a company dedicated to helping people and organizations increase their positivity to improve the quality of people’s work lives and the quality of company cultures. She is certified in Positive Psychology, an authorized partner for Everything DiSC®, and a Professional Member of the National Speaker’s Association.

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