“It doesn’t matter what others are doing. It matters what YOU are doing.” – Unknown
It was a beautiful morning with hardly anyone else in the pool. My swim the day before had felt really laboursome. This morning’s though saw me feeling strong and comfortable. I was a million blissful miles away when suddenly something caught my eye and shook me out of the joy I had been experiencing. A swimmer in the lane beside me swam past effortlessly.
“Comparison is the thief of joy.” – Theodore Roosevelt
The quote above has been coming up a lot within our program days lately. In the moment described above I was experiencing exactly that. Comparison really is the thief of joy. So catching ourselves when we do this, and then compassionately bringing our awareness back seems like the only real choice to make. For me that morning it was through one important question. ‘What am I grateful for?’
“Joy is not in things; it is in us.” – Richard Wagner
I don’t believe that any of us walk around in a 24 hour a day joyus bliss. But I do believe that as we navigate the successes and challenges that our journeys of potential present we can use questions like the one that I described above to reopen forgotten in a particular moment pathways to simple joys. Reflection, planning, growth, contribution, collaboration, and other practices that keep us engaged, challenged and inspired as we strive to make a difference in our own and others lives don’t require us getting caught up in comparison along the way.
“The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive you will see it.” – Thich Nhat Hanh
How does comparison show up within your journey of potential? Do you agree that comparison is the thief of joy? What ways do you compassionately bring yourself back when you notice comparison slipping into your thoughts, words and actions? What are you grateful for?
“It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.” – Confucius