Moving Beyond Comparison and Competition

a blog header about moving beyond comparison and competition

Moving Beyond Comparison and Competition Into Self-Love and Acceptance

The journey begins with recognizing comparison and competition not as benchmarks of success but as distractions from our true paths. It’s easy to feel lesser in our own eyes when we measure ourselves against the polished images and accomplishments of others, whether that’s through social media, advertisements, or even the expectations of those around us.

Comparison

Comparison is the thief of joy.” I often share an analogy with friends and clients who find themselves ensnared in the web of comparison. Imagine you’re standing at a train station, awaiting the train that will whisk you away to your unique destination. Beside you pulls up a train gleaming with allure—equipped with the most comfortable seats, dazzling lights, and all imaginable luxuries. Meanwhile, your train hasn’t even arrived, or perhaps it seems modest in comparison. But here’s the thing: no matter how enticing the other train appears, it’s not headed to your destination. Your path—much like your brand, your craft, and the connections you forge with your clients—is uniquely yours. I’ve walked in those shoes, tempted by what others possess, thinking it might fill a void or bring a sense of achievement. However, true fulfillment comes from pursuing your own path, and embracing the journey that’s meant for you and your business. Letting go of comparison is crucial, for it frees you to move forward, following the route that’s authentically aligned with your vision and the experiences you wish to create. So, let’s focus on our own tracks, for that’s where our true journey unfolds.

Competition

I had always believed in the power of my photography to tell stories, to capture moments that spoke to the heart. Yet, seeing other photographers’ photos, likes, and shares on Facebook made me feel less than others. With every scroll, I felt a twinge of envy. Their success, measured in likes and engagement, seemed so much more than my own, making me question my talents and the path I had chosen. 

One day, I paused on a photo I had taken—a simple, yet profound moment I had captured, one that had always resonated deeply with me. It didn’t have hundreds of likes or shares, but it was meaningful. In that moment of reflection, I realized how far I had strayed from what truly mattered.

I decided then to change my perspective. I began to focus on the stories I wanted to tell, the moments I felt compelled to capture. I embraced the idea that my photography was about connection, not competition.

As I look back on that period of doubt, I see it as a crucial turning point. It taught me that the only validation that truly matters is the one that comes from within, from knowing that I am pursuing my passion and staying true to my vision. The likes and shares? They’re just numbers. My real success is measured in the moments I capture and the stories I tell through my lens.

Moving Through It

Moving past comparison and competition to embrace self-love and self-worth is a transformative journey that requires intention, practice, and patience. Here are strategies to guide you through this journey:

1. Recognize and Redirect Your Thoughts

Awareness is the first step. When you catch yourself comparing your life or work to others, acknowledge the thought without judgment and gently redirect your focus to your own journey. Remind yourself that social media and external appearances often highlight only the successes, not the struggles.

2. Cultivate Gratitude

Start a daily practice of gratitude. Focus on the things you appreciate about yourself and your life. This can shift your perspective from what you lack to what you possess, fostering a sense of abundance and contentment.

3. Set Personal Goals

Define success on your own terms. Set personal and professional goals that are aligned with your values and aspirations, not with societal expectations or the achievements of others. Celebrate your progress towards these goals, however small.

4. Practice Self-Compassion

Be kind to yourself. Practice self-compassion by speaking to yourself as you would to a dear friend. Recognize that perfection is unattainable and that mistakes and setbacks are part of growth.

5. Limit Exposure to Triggers

If social media is a major source of comparison and dissatisfaction, consider limiting your exposure. Fill that time up with things you enjoy doing like going for walks, hiking, painting, or writing.

6. Celebrate Your Uniqueness

Embrace and celebrate what makes you unique. Recognize that your journey, with its ups and downs, contributes to your distinctive perspective and voice. Your individuality is your strength.

Conclusion

If I can move past comparison and competition, I know you can do it too! When we practice self-love and self-worth every day we learn that it is not a destination but a continuous journey. Remember, the only person you are in competition and comparison with is yourself,  no matter what society, social media or your neighbors next door want you to believe.

As you navigate your journey towards self-love and self-worth, remember that each step you take is a celebration of your unique story. A powerful way to honor this journey is through capturing moments that reflect your true essence and the beauty of your individuality.

Contact me today to book your session!

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