Quotes About Comparison: The Problem with Comparing

Quotes about comparison can provide insight into the human experience and offer guidance on how to navigate it. From Theodore Roosevelt to Helen Keller, many renowned figures have shared their thoughts on the topic, offering wisdom and perspective on the dangers of comparing ourselves to others.

Comparison is a natural human behavior that we all engage in at times. We might get caught up comparing various aspects of life such as wealth, appearance, relationships or other forms of perceived ‘success’ indicators.

While comparing can sometimes be motivating or inspiring, it can also be detrimental to one’s mental health and well-being. It can lead to feelings of inadequacy, jealousy, and low self-esteem.

It can be especially challenging in today’s social media-driven world, where we are constantly bombarded with images of other people’s seemingly perfect lives.

The below quotes touch on the problem with comparing and offer advice on how to overcome it. Whether you’re struggling with comparison or simply looking for some inspiration, these quotes can provide valuable insights and perspectives.

quotes on comparison to others

The Problem with Comparing

The biggest problem with comparing to others, is that it’s grossly unfair and inaccurate.

To explain this, we can use two famous idioms:

Firstly, you aren’t comparing ‘apples to apples’.

We often compare ourselves to others, who we may perceive to be similar to us, but in reality, everyone’s circumstances and experiences are different.

It’s not fair to compare yourself to someone who has had different opportunities, resources, or challenges than you.

Whilst privileges obviously provide advantages, there are also great lessons learnt from challenges that have been overcome too.  

Secondly, it’s inaccurate because you’re only seeing the ‘tip of the iceberg’, in which to compare to. 

The majority of time, we only see a snapshot of what the other person is choosing to present to the world. We have no idea about what else is going on, the work that has been put in, the sacrifices made and if in fact it’s actually real. 

There will always be someone who is better, smarter, or more successful. When people focus too much on comparing themselves to others, they may lose sight of their own goals and values.

They may become so fixated on what others have that they forget to appreciate what they have achieved and how far they have come.

Quotes About Comparison


“Comparison is the thief of joy.” Theodore Roosevelt


“Instead of comparing our lot with that of those who are more fortunate than we are, we should compare it with the lot of the great majority of our fellow men. It then appears that we are among the privileged.” Helen Keller


“Comparison kills creativity and joy.” Brene Brown


“Comparison is an act of violence against the self. It also leads to judgments and jealousy of those we deem “better off” than we are. If we aren’t the ones doing the comparing, then we’re the ones against whom other women measure themselves. In either case, the comparison, judgments, and jealousy can lead to ugly behavior.” Iyanla Vanzant


“After so many years struggling to keep up with you, I finally realized we’re not even running the same race.” Scott Stabile


“Don’t compare your chapter 1 to someone else’s chapter 20.” Unknown


“Other people’s lives seem better than yours because you’re comparing their director’s cuts with your behind the scenes.” Evan Rauch


“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.” Lao Tzu


“Look in the mirror rather than at your neighbor.” Frank Sonnenberg


“Comparing kills fulfillment.” Todd Stocker


“Don’t compare yourself with other people; compare yourself with who you were yesterday.” Jordan Peterson


“Jealousy is the fear of comparison.” Max Frisch


“I must create a system or be enslaved by another mans; I will not reason and compare: my business is to create.” William Blake


“Always remember, the goals that we have achieved pale in comparison to the daily commitments it took to get there.” Dabo Swinney


“We live in a world of communication – everyone gets information about everyone else. There is universal comparison, and you don’t just compare yourself with the people next door, you compare yourself to people all over the world and with what is being presented as the decent, proper and dignified life. It’s the crime of humiliation.” Zygmunt Bauman


Quotes About Comparing to Others


“As far as self-confidence goes, so much of social media is about approval, getting likes, comparing our lives to others’ – meanwhile, confidence is an inside job: it’s about how you feel about yourself regardless of what anyone else does or thinks. It’s a knowing that you’re human, you’re flawed, and you’re awesome in your own way.” Jen Sincero


“Don’t compare yourself with someone else’s version of happy or thin. Accepting yourself burns the most calories.” Caroline Rhea


“Everyone is comparing lives on social media and wants the perfect body, perfect image, perfect outfit, perfect life – we’re striving for this perfection, and it’s so unhealthy because there’s no such thing as perfection.” Emily Atack


“I generally find that comparison is the fast track to unhappiness. No one ever compares themselves to someone else and comes out even. Nine times out of ten, we compare ourselves to people who are somehow better than us and end up feeling more inadequate.” Jack Canfield


“You don’t have to live up to anyone else’s standards, you don’t have to look like anyone else, you don’t have to compare yourself to anyone else. You being you is enough, and you putting your positivity and good vibes out into the world, once you get to that point absolutely everything will fall into place.” Lizzie Velasquez


“Try not to get lost in comparing yourself to others. Discover your gifts and let them shine!” Jennie Finch


“I’m at peace with myself and where I am. In the past, I was always looking to see how everybody else was doing. I wasn’t competitive, I was comparative. I just wanted to be where everybody else was. Now I’ve gotten to an age when I am not comparing anymore.” Courteney Cox


Lastly, a funny quote on comparison to end on a light note:


“Instead of playing to win, I was playing not to lose. It reminds me of the story I once heard about two friends being chased by a bear, when one turned to the other and said, “I just realized that I don’t need to outrun the bear; I only need to outrun you.” Sean Covey


These quotes serve as a reminder that comparing oneself to others can be harmful and unproductive. Instead, people should focus on their own journey and progress, and strive to be the best version of themselves.

For more inspiring life quotes, check out:


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