Compare and Despair

Minds think their survival, which is really the body’s survival, depends on them knowing all they can about you and your weaknesses so they can save you from future failure. One of their favorite tools for knowing the future is comparison.

Comparison is how the mind secures its position as “safe” and “enough.” To a mind, you’re safe only when you know what’s coming. And you’re “good enough” only when you stack up favorably against others or against expectations (also created by your mind) for how you should be.

Constant comparison is not only unhelpful, it’s not even remotely accurate. Have you noticed how often you come out on top in the comparison game? Not often. The brain’s negativity bias inflates what it sees as your relative weaknesses and overlooks the positive. We think our comparisons are giving us accurate information, but these comparisons are based upon layers and layers of made up thought.

Comparisons are a machine-mind trying to nail down “you,” making sure you are good enough to survive. They are a machine-mind trying to nail down the future so there are no surprises.

But you and life are not nail-down-able. You and life are always safe and thriving.

You’ll see this when you look beyond the noise of your mind’s comparisons.

– Excerpt adapted from Just a Thought: A No-Willpower Approach to End Self-Doubt and Make Peace with Your Mind. Available here.

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