How do I stop comparing myself in real life to how I should be in my own head?

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    Since I am new here I didn’t exactly know where to file this under, so forgive me if this is posted in the wrong section.

    For some time now, I have been soul searching and meditating over the last 6 months. I have concluded that I long needed a better understanding of who I am and what is needed for my authentic self. So far, I am becoming more positive, gentle, and loving. I am not perfect, but as I continue to do this however I encountered an issue I long knew existed but never truly understood how to confront.

    To be clear I never compare myself to others, but I do compare myself to who I am in real life to how I should be in my own head. This comparison has long been a point of stress in my life; The true source of my internal struggles. I have a higher expectation of myself, but it’s something I can’t match up no matter how hard I try. This doesn’t just apply to me, but to my creative works in general. I’m never satisfied with how anything turns out. In knowing this I attempt to “fix” what is wrong and only create more problems down the line.

    I wanted to know if anyone here has gone through this cycle of self-comparison before in their lives and what advise one might give in my situation. I appreciate any advice that anyone would share here in this topic.


    Dear Mike:

    In my experience of such comparison as you described and as I understand it, I compared the ways I looked, the way I behaved and the way I performed to the ways I believed or hoped would win my mother’s approval. In that comparison I came out lacking. That was definitely a source of conflict throughout my life.

    The title of your thread includes “how I should be in my own head”- in our own heads we have the mental representative of our parent or parents and their input therefore is ongoing.

    What do you think?



    Dear Mike,

    I am glad you opened up to the TinyBuddha forum.

    Your self-realisation itself is already a huge step forward, and I’m glad you’re trying to find a way out of your self-comparison.

    If you were to ask me, I feel that the condition is perfectionism. You set unrealistically high expectations of yourself – and that, I’m guilty of it too. I used to do it all the time.

    But I’ve become better at controlling the temptation to judge myself, after all, aren’t we all our worst critics?

    I’m practising self-love and self-compassion more, as well as knowing that we are all human. We all make mistakes. We can’t afford to be perfect because as cheesy as it sounds, nobody is perfect.

    Again, Mike, don’t be harsh on yourself because you’ve realised that you self-compare. Instead, try to understand that we all have our strengths and limitations. Sometimes, the further you push, the further you get. Be patient with yourself, and tell me about your thoughts.



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