This week I went through a “doom and gloom” period when comparing my success to that of the super rich. Here’s what I’ve learned.
Comparing yourself to the super rich
The main thing that’s going for the super rich is that they get large amounts of money for their time. When you make £50,000 / year you’ll take a significantly longer time to get into the millions compared to someone who makes £1,000,000 / year as they can literally go from 0 to a million in a year. So when comparing oneself to them it’s easy to see how one’s personal wealth can suddenly start looking like peanuts. That hit my self-esteem really hard and got me into a vicious circle where I kept thinking that I’m not working hard enough, I make bad decisions or I’m not lucky enough. The last one is the worst one, because it does nothing to help me change the outcome.
Another big problem I experienced is not knowing where to begin. I would get into a state where I say to myself “do something about this”, but I would have no idea what to do. That’s because it’s all about focused actions over a prolonged period of time - “consistency over intensity”. Nobody gets rich and famous overnight, but when you compare yourself to others it can easily feel that way as you are comparing the end results. You may have a lot of good stuff going, but getting desperate is not going to help it in the long run. It’s important to remind yourself of the progress you are making and only update your daily actions if they are in line with your long term plan.
At that moment it seemed like I have no energy to do anything and only did things that I was in a habit of doing - binge on my favorite TV show at the time (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine” if you are curious 😄). That’s why it’s important to build atomic habits that keep you going when you have no will left to push yourself forward. It’s also important to celebrate those small habits that got you through afterwards. It’s difficult to say why this happens or why those mode changes affect me the way they do. Ideally I would be able to prevent these moods by avoiding the triggers.
I am happy because I recognized what’s happening to me and didn’t let myself make it worse. This is not the first or the last time this happens. It was also a good test to see which habits are strong and which ones still need more work - I didn’t write on that day (a sign that I need to work on this habit), but I did my stretching session.
Building strong foundations by forming the right habits is what will ultimately make or break you. I’ve done some reflection on the triggers that caused me my bad mood and I will avoid them. If (or should I say when) it happens though, the best thing I could do is to focus on continuing with my habits.