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“I will not reason and compare…my work is to create” – William Blake
How many times have you caught yourself comparing your success to others in an unfair way?
William Blake’s quote is so relevant to me right now, though I’m not 100% on the no reasoning (Or no logic) part! When our work is to create something new, it’s difficult to know when to compare yourself with the competition, and when to relax.
Should we ignore all logic and simply create? Is it a waste of time to create without ensuring you are on the right track, going in the same direction as your peers, colleagues or business associates?
Sometimes, comparisons can hurt us, and other times they can fuel us to be our best.  Today’s post is about exactly that!

 

Why Comparison Can Be Good

Healthy Competition

otivational-Monday-62-Compare-High-QualityIf you’re a teacher just starting to explore the business and “teacherpreneur” possibilities out there, you are not alone!  Here’s what you should know about your competition:

 

  • Who Are They? –  Remember to compare like with like.  If you’ve just launched your first product, your first teaching blog post, or are starting to find your audience, make a list of established websites, bloggers and successful idols
  • What Are They Doing Right?  –  Write down why you love the website, achievements and success of those you admire. It will help put you in the right mood to get there yourself!
  • What Can I Do Differently? – If there is something you think can be done differently (or better!), be sure to note it down. In business, this is your competitive advantage  – where you shine, and why people will buy from you.
  • When Will They Be A Realistic Comparison?  – Be careful here!  When did your competitors start? Remember to consider how long it took them to get where they are today before you start benchmarking against them.

 

Competitive Advantage

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When Comparison Gets Ugly (& What to do about it)

 

1. Develop Fair Benchmarks

Now, the most important part about comparing is making sure you compare like with like.  Measurement is so important is setting goals, but it’s also easy to let it slide when you see so many successful people ahead of you.  Don’t let jealousy or a longing to be like others take control.

Instead, take control yourself.

Setting benchmarks that work is key here.  I checked out a few tips for comparisons from the BDC here.

There are two details to remember:

First, measuring will help you:

I know it’s scary to think of benchmarks at first, but you need to see how you’re doing. Honestly, and without judgment, track your current progress.

Second, it’s not a one-time measure:

Don’t forget to keep measuring as you work towards your goals.  Whether you do this every few months, once a month, or twice a year, be sure you are constantly keeping in the loop with what others are doing around you.

 

2. Track Your Progress 

By now, you all know how much I love my Google Calendar, and other tracking tools like Trello!  Even a sheet of paper and a pen can work wonders.

Be consistent, and track your progress to meet your goals every single time you set one. You’ll be surprised how quickly this propels you to reach them.

 

3. Should You “Reason”, Or “Follow Your Heart”?

Now, we may often be inclined to follow our dreams, to follow our heart, but what about logic and reason? In my opinion, we need a little bit of both.Motivational Monday 45 follow your heart

First, I’d start with following your heart.  Decide on what you really want to do, and go with your gut.

 

Then, check yourself with reason.  Be sure you have a clear WHY when you start a new project, or even attack a project that’s been sitting on your desk for awhile.  If you know the why, it’ll be much easier to make your dreams reality. Benchmarks will be easier to establish, too!

 

Even if you can’t figure it all out in the beginning, write down what you know about why you are headed in the direction you are.

 

Do you agree with William Blake that we should ignore reason and simply create? What are your favourite ways to benchmark when you set your goals? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below 🙂

 

Have a lovely and productive Monday!
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P.S.  Photo fans, the photo for today’s post (and poster!) is one I took right here in Barcelona, after an uncharacteristic downpour 😉


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