To reach new heights, we have to reach for new heights. We so often compare ourselves to colleagues, friends, neighbours, or other local people in our field. This can be a stretch? Or, possibly a comfort zone? Let’s be honest! Comparing yourself with a buddy can be a problem when it comes to reaching these heights.
This hack is about raising the standards! It’s about knowing that you have unlimited potential in this world. It’s about reaching for excellence and not settling for average. Ask yourself … is this the best you can do?
You have to compare yourself to the BEST to BE THE BEST!
Instead of comparing yourself, your skills and your work to your buddy, start comparing yourself to the best in the world, the best who ever did what you are trying to do. (Unless your buddy is wearing that crown though, lol!)
“Anytime you sincerely want to make a change, the first thing you must do is to raise your standards.”
– Anthony Robbins
I’m talking about a healthy reality check and a healthy competitive drive. Not comparing yourself to others and being discouraged because you’re not like them, but looking at the potential in a positive way: to find inspiration and motivation in truly amazing people. And of course, I believe in individuality; being yourself, but don’t play yourself either. You can do more, and you can do better!
It’s healthy to have something to strive for, someone to look up to, so you can push yourself and constantly improve. The greatest athletes, musicians, artists, writers, philosophers and entrepreneurs, have usually honed their skills by studying the greats, and being inspired by the highest achievers. By holding themselves responsible to a higher standard than anybody expected of them.
I think I first learned this principle in my teens when I used to play basketball. I was so passionate (I still hold basketball very close to my heart), and great coaches and team players that were all thinking the same way surrounded me. We used to hang out and just watch a lot of basketball games on VHS. When someone did a crazy move, like a crossover or an alley-oop, we would rewind the tape over and over again to analyze the whole play. And afterwards we would go out and practice it on the court.
It’s amazing how your life and results can change with this fairly simple shift in mindset. By just comparing yourself to the greats, expecting more of yourself and from your actions, you will reach for more and achieve more. It should be a continuous process where you stop and reassess where you are compared to the best. Always aim for the crème de la crème!
Just think about it. We have one shot at this life game, as far as we know. One shot at leaving a footprint and creating a legacy. Why settle for average? Say you work at something for ten years, some craft or profession. If you constantly measure yourself to the best, just think about the difference that will make on your progress over those ten years, compared to measuring yourself to your buddy for the same period. It will be huge, right?
Most people have low standards and low expectations of themselves. They don’t strive for greatness and are okay as long as they are close, or on the same level as their circle.
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
– Jim Rohn
Our whole lives are a direct reflection of who we compare ourselves to and the standards that we hold. This applies to profession and career path, but also appearances, relationships, finances and so much more. These are all governed by the standards we hold them to. If we have low standards and low expectations of ourselves, we won’t achieve anything of significance, and it will lead to merely average results.
Surprisingly, there is a science behind this madness. We often compare ourselves to our peer, to other people in our circle, to feel better about ourselves and to boost our self-esteem. It’s absolutely normal human nature! But it’s not doing us any good, and it’s actually preventing us from living up to our true potential. Stop playing inside of this comfort zone, raise your standards, and expect more. It only takes just a little bit of awareness and thinking bigger about yourself.
My take-away closing tip? Find a few idols within the different areas of your life, especially where you have the most passion. It can be your special craft, career, finances, sports, health and fitness or interior design. Someone who is truly great and that you can look up to. Study what they do, how they do it, how they did it, and practice the lessons you learn. Be inspired by them and reach for their level of quality. Go for greatness!
Now let’s move forward…
– Casper Stang