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Comparing Yourself to Others

Dear all,

Happy Friday :) Hope everyone is having a great week so far and looking forward to an exciting or relaxing weekend. For those celebrating Eid, Happy Eid Selamat Hari Raya Maaf Zahir Batin! I am so thankful for today. The final month, the final week and the final day of my university life at Imperial College London is today. Alhamdulillah. 

I was browsing through one of the motivational pages I follow on Instagram and instantly thought of a motivational article to write. It's called 'motivationmafia' and apparently has almost 2 million followers.

This topic I felt was applicable at whichever walk of life or stage in life you are in, there is a tendency to compare with others. Even those who you think are better than you also have a tendency to compare with others too. It's a very unhealthy habit that most of us adopt. Whether you are that person that people compare themselves to or you are that person always comparing yourself with others, both situations are not too pleasant and can lead to negative feelings.

I feel that one major thing that we all need to realise is that each and every person is different, in many many many ways. No two people are exactly alike. This is the nature of life. If you continuously compare yourself to others, it will be a never-ending lifetime commitment. At one point, you need to stop and reflect. When I observe people, I see many people who are at the two extremes. They are either too proud of themselves and look down on others or they are constantly comparing themselves, feeling low and at times jealous of other people. There are not many people in the ideal situation whereby they are confident of themselves, happy for other people's happiness and happy to be who they are. This ideal situation is where all of us should want to be. I feel that only people with a good and clean heart can achieve this and be at this level and it is one thing that everyone should thrive to be.

The first extreme is being too proud of yourself and looking down on people. Honestly, I cannot stand people who are like this and I think nobody can or would want to. People like these drive friends away and create haters. They are too consumed by their own life and vain that they forget about others. They look down on other people's achievement and only think that they are the best. This too is a comparison to others. Not only the other extreme. That is why comparing yourself, in general, is unhealthy. It can lead you to either of the extremes. People like this cannot go too far in life, in my opinion, because at one point people who they are dealing with for example a company will want them to go or if they stay, they will have a hard time with other people. The thing is that people in this category usually do not really care. They feel too good about themselves that making others feel bad is not even affecting them one bit. Sometimes they do not even realise it. There is this common act of feeling superior and you often see this behaviour in bosses. That is why you must be thankful if you have a reliable and efficient but humble and understanding boss. Commonly, people adopt this habit or reach this extreme when they are in a high position or when they get so many things in life. 

It's a good idea to remember to be humble and respect everyone around you. You never know who can help you in life, it could be anyone. Once I had a very important interview it was actually my interview in Autumn 2012 to go to Imperial College London and I was extremely nervous I do not know why. When I left class early (it was during A-levels) to go home for the telephone interview, I bumped into a cleaner. We started talking, I told her I was heading for an interview and she gave me one of the best motivational words and support I could ever ask for at that time. I still remember that and we met like on the ground floor, near the area where the sweepers sit to rest. She also mentioned her daughter and told me I would do great and gave me some tips. It really does wonders when you think of how random people can positively impact your life. It's simply amazing alhamdulillah. It's really a matter of having that good morale and mindset when you meet people from all walks of life.

The second extreme is not too harmful to other people but more harmful to yourself. It is comparing yourself too much to others and feeling low confidence. Some people stop there and just continuously feel bad about themselves, but some people develop the next negative feeling which is jealousy. When it involves jealousy, it starts to be more harmful to other people as it will affect your relationship with others. The root of this issue is insecurity within yourself and feeling that you are not good enough in a certain aspect. You then compare yourself to someone who is better in that aspect and feel jealous. Little did you know that that person has their own insecurities themselves which you may not know and which they do not share with people. I know someone who only shares her insecurities with people she feels 'safe' and this means people who she knows will have her back and support her with positive words. Some people nowadays just want to know what problems you are facing but they have no support to offer which is unfortunate. And something I watched in a motivational video about friends is that some friends are like leaves, some like branches, some like tree trunks and some like roots. The roots are the keepers, the leaves are people who come and go and are only there for a certain period of life. It is not easy to identify the leaves and the roots but my advice is to be the best version of yourself and the best will come to you. 

There is really no point being jealous. If you realise, the more you are jealous, the more reasons you have to be jealous of that person or situation. The only way out is to stop the jealous feelings, appreciate what you have and make other people's happiness a motivation for you to reach your goals. If it is a good friend, then there are more reasons not to be jealous. You should feel happy for the other person and proud because it is your friend or family member that is doing great in life. To the person doing great in life should also stay humble and thankful and spread the happiness in any way that they can. That's what they call sharing and spreading the love. Life is really too short for all this negativity and one day, you will look back and say 'I wish I did so and so' or 'I wish I was more so and so'. You do not want to have regrets on your behaviour or actions in life so again, be the best version of yourself and better. To those who have people feeling jealous of them, stay cautious. It is also not a good idea to be too nice to everyone. Not everyone has good intentions and you should differentiate those who you can trust and who you are not too sure. Stay guarded but respectful and nice. Your safety and well-being is also important and it would be a good idea to avoid people who you feel a negative vibe. If you have been nice constantly and did what you could and they are still behaving negatively, stay away. You have done your part and there is no need to waste too much energy to please people who do not appreciate it. Stay confident and keep doing what you do best. 

And that is my motivation of the week for all of you. Happy last day of June! Wow, we are half way through 2017 and happy July tomorrow.

Warm wishes from me,


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