Theodore Roosevelt famously said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.” And, as it turns out, there is a bunch of empirical evidence to back that sentiment up. When we compare ourselves to others, we lose focus on what’s important and fail to give ourselves proper credit. Certainly, social comparison is an innate human tendency, and whether it’s the wisest move or not, it’s a big part of the way we determine our own level of happiness.
We won’t allow failure, yet we are failing them. You see, I figure there are countless parents who could not bear the idea of their children getting a poor grade. They sit at the kitchen table and make sure the kid gets all the answers correct or that their project looks professionally done.
“You hear me, but you are not listening.” As the words came out of my mouth, I realized that I sounded like some version of my parents. My kids truly were not paying any attention to what I was saying. I received the teenage nods and maybe a grunt of acknowledgment, but I might as well have told them I was headed to Mars.
I’ve had my share of prideful moments. I’m not referencing the kind of joy and pleasure that come from hard work and accomplishment. No, I’m talking about the prideful moments where I compared myself to others, self-promoted my loved ones to make myself feel better and put others down to falsely prop myself up.