Comparison, Transition and Starting

I’ve discovered that comparison holds me back.  It shouldn’t.  It’s very silly to let it.

I suppose it’s to be expected – in school you get grades and marks. In the sports I played growing up there was a score.  It’s easy to know who you’re better than, and who’s better than you. I’m not saying this is bad, but it set me up to compare myself a lot.

I was good at some of the things where score was kept, so I did more.  I was less good at others, so I did less.  This is fine, but it starts to make me think  “I’m the kind of person that does that thing”, or I’m not.

Take writing this blog.  I am never going to be Seth Godin. My output will never be as good as his. It will also never be as good as many many other people. If I compare myself, then in my mind I’m not a writer or a blogger, or much of anything I want to be.

Perhaps an the best example for me is exercise. I’m not particularly fit.  I’m actually quite fat.  I’m not the type of person that goes running.

Except actually, maybe I am, but something is holding me back.  That something is comparison and what I think others will think.  In my head, the conversation goes something like this:

ME: “I’m off for a run”
SOMEONE ELSE “A run?  You don’t look like the type of person that goes for a run…”

and yes, at the moment, I probably don’t,

But I took a lot of inspiration from a talk that Nicole gave this weekend, and a conversation I had with her before it.  I think her exact quote was:

“You can’t think your way to a half marathon”

You have to DO.  You have to RUN. And that means you have to start. And that means there has to be a transition from being the type of person who doesn’t go for a run, to the type of person who does.

Nicole describes herself as being obsessed with log distance running, and talks with passion and enthusiasm about it. She’s run a lot further than I ever have, and is training for her first marathon. If you compare her to someone like Paula Radcliffe then she’s not the best long distance runner, but why should that matter.  I have no doubt that Nicole is a runner. I know she’ll run a marathon this year. I’m pretty sure at some point she will run some crazy 100 mile plus race, but just because she hasn’t yet doesn’t mean she’s not a fanatical long distance runner.

As soon as you start, you are. No need to worry about the transition.

Cheers, and thanks for being totally inspiring Nicole.


Amazing Photos from #WDS: Armosa Studios


  1. So true. There’s no use in over thinking things, best to just crack on.

    Enjoying the blog, Rob. Keep it up. You are a blogger now ;)


  2. Thanks Karen, Another post on it’s way soon, hopefully tonight.


  3. Love this. “As soon as you start, you are.” Oh, and you are not fat. You need to spend more time in America.

  4. [...] belief in the power of doing. This is a minor success in many ways, but remember, I’m only comparing myself to me here, so actually this is a major [...]

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