Never Compare


Are you guilty like I am?  Are you guilty of comparing yourself to others?  I’m a little embarrassed to admit this but here’s my story…

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt

I was up in the mountains enjoying a girl’s getaway with a couple of friends.

They are amazing, beautiful women; one is an Engineer and the other is an Accountant. They’re both incredibly smart and work for these large, very impressive organizations.  And as we were catching up – maybe it was the inspiring mountain scenery or maybe it was the martinis – but I found myself in awe of my friends.

I started to stress, “What about me?”

In my mind I was quietly comparing myself to them and – simultaneously –  feeling not so awesome about myself.  You see, my one friend’s in line for an exciting promotion because she’s brilliant and the other is celebrating 14 years with the most sought after employer in the city.

… And who am I?  I’m just this entrepreneur, this Career Coach, that’s building her business & trying to make a difference in women’s lives.  I started to drive myself crazy because the more I compared myself to my friends, the more bummed out I felt.  Of course, my friends saw this and asked, “What’s up with you?”

So I told them.

And they said, “Are you crazy?  We’re in awe of you!  Here we are hiding behind these big organizations, dealing with all the politics, people telling us what do all the time – and there you are out in life laying your own track, having a whale of a time AND you get to choose who your clients are.”

Right about then, I began to realize that we’re all nuts!

Aren’t we?

We constantly compare ourselves & our careers with everyone else, and all it does it make us feel bad about ourselves and diminishes our joy.

My favourite cartoonist, Hugh MacLeod, has a genius piece on just this issue.  He says something like this: You can never compare your insides to someone else’s outsides.  Because you’ll never truly know the private struggles, the personal obstacles they’re facing. No matter how pretty & put together they may look on the outside, you just never know, maybe they’re secretly comparing themselves to you.

So that’s the career lesson here, ladies.  Never compare!  Do what’s right for YOU.  If you love your work: embrace it.  It you don’t: change it.

Cheers to that,



2 Responses to “Never Compare

  • Marlene Cyr
    3 years ago

    This is so true of me. I often envy other people’s lives, but then I sit back and think, “They don’t have 39 years of Government service like I do.”

    • Exactly Marlene! Every job has both challenges and rewards… and a 39yr career with the government certainly does provide some security! Congrats & thanks for your comment.

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