Would you like to know a sure-fire way to destroy the self-esteem of a child?
Compare them to others.
Even if the comparison is positive.
Over time the focus of always pitting them against another person will destroy their sense of worth.
- If you compare them in a negative way, they will never feel good enough.
- If you compare them in a positive way, they will be trained to gain their value by making others smaller.
- Also, if you use positive comparisons, someone will eventually be better than them, thus crushing their house of cards.
Do you know why so many copywriters feel inadequate and lack confidence?
Because they are constantly comparing themselves to others.
“If I was a great copywriter like Clayton, I’d make tons of money…”
“If I started back when Bob did, I’d be rich by now…”
“If I was an amazing marketing guy like Perry, I’d land clients at will…”
“If I was energetic and positive like Joshua, I’d always have money and friends…”
There are endless ways to compare yourself to others… and all of them are a bad idea.
Today, I want to invite you to stop it.
Stop it and replace those thoughts and feelings with thoughts and feelings that will bring power and confidence into your life.
Here’s a simple 3-step formula that will help you instantly shift your focus to helpful, positive things…
Step One: Track
Most of us are so used to comparing ourselves, that we don’t even know we’re doing it.
It’s like people that are always running out of money… they don’t even realize that their spending habits are the problem, not their income.
So, the first step is to become aware of your comparative thoughts.
I suggest you use your smartphone, computer, or a simple notecard to help you track your thoughts.
Every time you catch yourself comparing yourself to someone else, just make a note of it… this can be a simple tick mark or a sentence about what your thought was.
Track it by day, for 7 days.
Sound like a lot of work?
It is… but you can’t change something you’re not even aware of…
just ask any recovering alcoholic… denial is a very real thing and the biggest barrier to recovery.
Step Two: Pleasure and Pain
The next step is to be honest about the real impact of your thoughts.
Thoughts are real, tangible things. They are like seeds. If planted and nurtured, they will produce fruit.
You plant and nurture thoughts by repeating them.
If you continue to compare yourself with others, you will reap negative fruit in your life… it will crush your confidence… and confidence is the number one ingredient for success.
So, you have to face the reality of the effects of your thoughts.
You can do this with two pieces of paper and 10 minutes of your time.
Take both pieces and fold them in half… and then half again.
You now have a mini-booklet.
On the top of one write, “My Pleasure Book” on the other write, “My Pain Book”.
Set a timer for 5 minutes.
When the timer starts, write on the inside of the “Pain” book all the things that you are missing out of in your life because you don’t have more confidence… (or, in some cases you might have overconfidence, which is called arrogance… just as destructive, if not more so).
Don’t overthink it… just write as fast as you can.
You don’t need to write an essay, just keywords and thoughts.
- Make note of the happy times you’ve missed out on in the past.
- Be blunt about people you’ve hurt.
- Look into the future and see what you will miss out on if you continue on this course.
Be brutally honest.
You can’t change the reality of your life if you don’t face the realities of you life.
Yes, this will be a painful exercise… its supposed to be! But, it’s a good kind of pain and it will only last 5 minutes 🙂
Now, for the fun part…
Next, do the same thing with the “Pleasure” book… only this time reverse the perspective.
- Make note of the happy times you’ve had in the past because you were confident.
- Imagine the joy and happiness you will bring to others, right now, today.
- Look into the future and see what amazing lifestyle and adventures you could have with more confidence.
If you’ll give your whole heart and soul to these two exercises for just 5 minutes each, you’ll be amazed at the intensity of your feelings… and how it helps empower you to make changes in your life.
Step Three: Replacement
Now that you’re emotionally charged and know why you need to gain greater confidence, its time to replace your current thoughts with more positive productive ones.
Some people think that when you stop comparing yourself with others, you should only focus on doing your personal best.
I disagree with this.
Isn’t that just the other side of the same coin?
The coin being selfishness… a focus on self.
I’ve found that a much more powerful way to live life is to focus on others.
You might call this Pollyannaish, but history has proven time and time again that service is the only path to joy, fulfilment, and success.
Here are a few quotes for you to consider:
“Joy can only be real if people look upon their life as a service and have a definite object in life outside themselves and their personal happiness.”
~ Leo Tolstoy
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi
The aim of marketing is to know and understand the customer so well the product or service fits him and sells itself.
~ Peter Drucker
Help others and give something back. I guarantee you will discover that while public service improves the lives and the world around you, its greatest reward is the enrichment and new meaning it will bring your own life.
I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.
The point is this… stop thinking about who is better… or worse… and start thinking about who you can serve. Train your mind to think in terms of “Who can I help today?” and “How can I make their lives better?”
Earl Nightingale suggests an incredibly powerful way to do this…
Daily Service Focus and Action
Each day set aside one hour… and if you don’t have an hour, make it 30 min, or even just 15 min… and spend that time thinking about nothing else besides how you can be of service to someone.
One day you might think about your niche and potential clients.
Another day about your actual clients and what pressing problems they’re facing.
Another day you might think about your loved ones and friends.
Write down the thoughts as they come to you.
Then, choose just one to act on. Make a simple plan and do the service you thought of.
The great turning point in my business came when I began thinking about others. How could I help my clients? How could I help their customers?
It pushed me to be a better writer, more engaged, more giving, more helpful.
In return, I have been rewarded emotionally, spiritually, and financially. The abundance that has come to me because of this kind of thinking has been wildly out of proportion to the time it takes me to do the service.
I think it’s the best ROI equation in the world.
Give a little, reap a lot.
Share Your Service
Serving isn’t about bragging… but sharing positive stories can have a powerful effect on others.
In fact, if you do it right, sharing your good deeds is a form of serving.
I’d love to hear your thoughts and learn how you have served others.