When surrounded by others, it can be difficult not to compare your successes to everyone else’s. Unfortunately, this competition can lead to stress and can easily create situations where you feel insecure about your path in life. But remembering that success looks different for everyone is just one step to maintaining your confidence.
So what are some other ways you can avoid falling into a comparison trap and instead build healthy connections with your peers? Below, 10 professionals from Young Entrepreneur Council discuss some of the tips they’d recommend for avoiding unnecessary comparison with others and successfully connecting with peers.
1. Remember Everyone Is Different
Forget about comparing your success to someone else’s because everyone has different training, expertise and experiences. Focus on your own successes, failures and the opportunities in front of you so you don’t fall into the jealousy trap. Knowing who you are and your value will help keep you focused on your own journey.
2. Play Your Own Game
Play your own game and support them in theirs. When my friends were hitting career milestones while I was still playing around with business ideas, it helped to remind myself that I was going after something different. Maybe it would take several tries, but that was my path, not somebody else’s. The more authentic you are, the more you focus on your own goals and not external measures of success.
3. Be Happy for Others
Instead of becoming jealous or envious of other people’s success, you should be happy for them. Success isn’t a zero sum game. Just because they succeeded doesn’t mean you can’t. Your peers’ success doesn’t take anything away from you. Actually, it should help you. Be happy for what they’ve accomplished. Try to learn from their experiences and apply it to your own business.
4. Consistently Practice Gratitude
A healthy way to connect with your peers instead of comparing yourself is to consistently practice gratitude. When you’re grateful for what you already have, it allows you to make space for even better possibilities. Showing happiness for other people’s success will make you feel good and encourage others to do the same for you when you get where you want to be.
5. Focus on Offering Value
Instead of worrying about what you’ll get out of connections or calls, focus on how you can offer value to your connection. It makes it much less stressful and I find that it always leads to much better outcomes.
6. Keep a Supportive Network of Peers
Be mindful of whom you surround yourself with. If you surround yourself with toxic people who are envious of others, you will inevitably adopt this way of thinking. Instead, surround yourself with positive influences, those who celebrate other people’s success and don’t take their own for granted. Keeping a supportive network of peers is the best way to avoid the trap of self-comparison in the long run.
7. Remember That Success Leaves Clues
For me, the idea that other people’s success is simply evidence that success is also available for me has been an important part of entrepreneurship. The quote “success leaves clues” is important when it comes to surrounding ourselves with people who motivate and inspire us. Using this mindset and perspective, we are able to use other people’s success as a strategy for our own.
8. Acknowledge Your Peers’ Strengths
To build a healthy connection with your peers that isn’t based on envy, it’s important to recognize their strengths and acknowledge them. Congratulating someone for their achievements shows good character and produces good karma that’s sure to come your way. It also makes you feel better and encourages you to also chase your dreams and reach success.
9. Be Mindful of Your Progress
You’re never going to feel satisfied if you compare your success to someone else’s. Instead, look to your peers and idols for motivation, and to lend a hand if they need a hand up. I always take time to reflect on my career progress every month to put in perspective how far I’ve come and how much I have to be proud of.
10. Ask Yourself What You Could Learn
When you feel envious, ask yourself: What can I learn from this person? Why do I envy them? Sometimes, the person you envy is merely showing you something you yourself are capable of. Be respectful. Lead by giving, not by asking what you can get when you’re cultivating the relationship. Good things will happen.
These answers are provided by Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue each year and have created tens of thousands of jobs. Learn more at yec.co.