Here are a few things you can easily compare:
- The status conferred by your role or company or degree
- The number of products you shipped
- Your car
- The amount of press you’ve received
- The size of your home
- The number of likes you receive on your social media shares
Here are a few things you can’t easily compare:
- The strength of your closest relationships
- Your sense of self worth
- The amount of undivided attention you’re able to give to the folks who matter to you
- How much you have learnt about topics that matter to you
- Your self awareness and thoughtfulness
- The impact you’ve had – both in terms of breadth and depth
- The amount of time you are able to dedicate to deep, uninterrupted work
We are wired to compare and compete. We compare and compete because we tell ourselves the story that winning in these things matter.
But, they don’t. The trophies we collect from these are fake and the joy they bring disappears in a few hours – like leprechaun gold.
In the long run, it is the things that we can’t easily compare that bring us meaning and happiness.
When in doubt, index on what you can’t easily compare.