Few weeks ago, my friend, Ibk, was designing her Disha page. While she did that, she had the page of a role model we both shared as guide. After she was done, she showed it me to review. I saw a bit of word tardiness and I pointed it out. In her defense, she replied that it was the same way our role model did hers.
Immediately she said that, honestly, my hands fell. I mean, this role model in question is known for excellence. I couldn’t possibly fault her. So if she did that, who was I to complain? But then, Ibk did a screenshot of the sample she followed and then I compared it with hers.
It was then I realized that while she copied the concept of what our role model did, she couldn’t repeat the execution style. They weren’t the same. I saw the gulf in quality. It was the same concept, yeah, but my friend couldn’t repeat the quality of execution. She wasn’t at her level yet.
Millions of young minds out there today have fallen into this trap. We see something apparently good and qualitative online or from distant physical relations and we make to copy it. Unfortunately, the execution is never always the same. The years and process put into the sample is never the same as ours. So, we fail.
And when we do, we spiral. We delude ourselves into thinking we are unworthy, irresponsible or simply not good enough. Because of this, we either stop trying or try too hard. Before you know it, we fail too hard or become not as successful as we expected like the sample we copied. And because our foundation is still shallow, we slow and steady fall into depression while we fast and furiously die inside.
I can’t remember the number of times I’ve been tempted to compare myself with one or two of my role models. It’s always a battle, so I realize I’m not an exemption. However, I take pride in the fact that I, myself, have come a long way and I am pretty good in my own right.
I constantly remind myself how good I am and what makes me good. By doing this, I’m reminded that I know next to nothing about these people I truly respect their output. I may see them online every time, dishing out quality, I may even have access to them for quick hellos and comments, but I never really know them. Hence, comparison of our quality productions is futile and unwise.
If you must compare, please take note of execution. And taking note of execution require accepting the journey to get there. And journey, is a blend of years and process. Don’t overrun yourself if you are just getting on the track. It’s never been a sprint, it’s a marathon. People you look up to, which is okay, must never be the reason you failed caused you compared yourself too quickly and hard. Comparison is a thief of peace of mind.
In this 21st century, there are about thousands of people doing already what you intend to do or are already doing – you probably know/follow a few. Please, resist the temptation to compare your success with theirs. While it is okay to push to be better as you look up to bigwigs in your discipline or in life generally, you must also respect the journey and process.
Stop unfair comparison. Take your time. Build along the way. And please, avoid depression. Say NO to suicidal thoughts…