Live with contentment by resisting comparisons


We love to make comparisons with others, don’t we?

We look at other people’s car, their house, their things, maybe even their talents or looks and we start to compare ourselves to them.

We convince ourselves that we are equally as deserving as they are of all the nice things that they have.

We see this in effect in our world all the time.

Someone buys a house and you ask them how many bedrooms the house has. They tell you it has six bedrooms and it sounds a little funny for someone with two kids who both moved out of the house already.

Why do we do this?

We do it for at least two reasons.

First, so people will look at us longingly and second so we can treat our disease of discontentment.

We as a society often judge success by the size of a person’s home and the type of car they drive.

These standards are damaging people in the long run.

People are buying into the lie that their life has been a failure if they can never afford these things and so they live their lives with discontentment.

We have to stop playing the comparison game!

We will never find contentment if we are always comparing ourselves with others.

Contentment begins where comparison ends.

We will always find someone who has more than us or someone who has something that we want.

We need to realize how much we really have.

Perhaps rather than always looking and comparing ourselves to those that have more than we do, maybe we need to compare down sometimes, and by doing so realize how much we really have.

Perhaps rather than looking at the guy with envy who drives the car of our dreams, we need to look at the millions of people around the world that can’t afford the biggest clunker car we can imagine.

Perhaps rather than looking at the guy who has the fancy home longingly and thinking how we would like that maybe we need to look at the millions of people around the world who do not have homes or a roof over their heads.

When life feels tough and you are tempted to compare yourself with others always remember how much you really have.

How have you played the comparison game?


This post is part 2 of 4 in a series of posts on learning to live with contentment.  Here are the other posts in the series:

1. The disease of discontentment.
2. Learn to live with contentment by resisting comparisons.
3. Learn to live with contentment by knowing that contentment comes from within.
4. Learn to live with contentment by counting your blessings.

Categories: Christian living


  • TC Avey says:

    I like your point about comparing down. That is not nearly as fun, but it sure helps put life in perspective. We have so much to be thankful for. Why make ourselves miserable by comparing ourselves to the Jones when we have have so many blessings that we are ignoring?

  • We need to make gratitude such a real part of our life. Discontentment will run us down if we don’t wake up to see what we truly have. Doesn’t mean things aren’t difficult sometimes, but you know that He is faithful in the midst of all of it. Thanks Kevin. Good word.

  • Mika Castro says:

    That’s true. We have to live our life with to without the things that we really want in life. Be contented n what we have.

  • Hans Schoff says:

    Hey Kevin, recently when tornadoes struck nearby, seeing the damage and destruction and imagining how difficult it would be to have to rebuild one’s life from that – even if you were prepared – made me realize just how fortunate we all are to have what we currently have, because in an instant it could all be taken away.

  • April says:

    Reading this post reminded me of some lines from Desiderata.

    “If you compare yourself with others,
    you may become vain or bitter,
    for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
    Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
    Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
    it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.”

  • John Gaydon says:

    Hi Kevin,

    I find that comparing is useless and counterproductive. They say what you focus on expands. Feeling gratitude for every blessing you have in your life creates more of that. Comparing yourself with others leads to disappointment, envy and losing what you already have! I am afraid this is a Universal law and impossible to dodge.

  • Dean.C says:

    Well, very indeed insight… Comparison is about knowing better things to used with..

  • Debbie says:

    This is so true! I wrote on this very topic today on Heart Choices but mine was very short. I used Galatians 6:4-5 with an illustration of two of our four year old children comparing who is taller. 🙂

  • Fatima Hipolito says:

    Yeah every people must contented for what they have, if you are wish some gadget or unit you must give you best shot to got all of that..

  • Nile says:

    While I may deserve to have the same success, I still have to earn it. I think people get so caught up in envy about what others have they forget that they have the choice to work hard and do the same or better. Frankly it would be best to congratulate another’s success and just be happy knowing you can make your own path to success.

  • Cley says:

    True! It’s not a good habit to make comparisons to others because sometimes they will depend on us too much and we cant say no to them and that is a burden.

  • Cathy35 says:

    Thanks for sharing your insight about us.. I really love to be inspire by you.. 🙂

  • Rick Salas says:

    Hi Kevin, You’re right. Being discontent because you see other people with more toys than you is a really bad thing. It destroys the way we live every day. Instead of enjoying what was given us we sometimes are ungrateful and think that just because somebody has it we should too. Most of the time they have more stress in their lives anyway.

    I never worry about stuff like that. I enjoy everyday of my life and always have what seems bad or holding me back in business as just another obstacle that is thrown before me. You know, everything turns out good if you have a good attitude. It’s a part of life and I learned a long time ago to just get over it. I know that spending hundreds of dollars to stand next to a guru wont make me anymore money.

    I’m just glad to have a roof over my head too. Doesn’t matter how expensive it is. The success and materialistic things people have to buy should be set aside for a rainy day. But I am planning on making a lot of money ( if it’s meant to be) but it’s not for me or because I want to be seen as somebody I’m not.

    Rick Salas

  • Samantha says:

    I think it has a lot to do with age,in my case.I don’t get upset as easily as when I was younger,I don’t stress out over everything.I’ve learned to pick my battles and let the rest go.Forgiveness is also a major hurdle,I don’t carry that baggage around with me anymore.Don’t worry about things you can’t change,use your energy on those things you can change.Love life,love your family,and say your prayers.

  • Yorinda says:

    Hi Kevin,

    you are so right, comparing ourselves and what we have and/or do to others only causes discontentment.

    By looking at what we do have and appreciating it regardless how big or glamorous it is we not only feel better, but we also make it possible to attract more into our lives.

    Thank you for the Inspiration.

  • Kevin,
    When I feel on top of the world I usually do not compare what I have to others because I feel content or elated. But when problems arise, when I am struggling, I sometimes compare what I am going through to others’ lives that appear to be going smoothly. The fact is, I have no idea what types of internal and external struggles they actually have. And all of that doesn’t matter anyway. When I focus on gratitude, and really feel it, the problems lessen and the solutions often miraculously appear.


    Dr. Erica

  • Don Faust says:

    Good advice. People need to find out what makes THEM happy.

  • Crosby says:

    Yes Kevin, you are right, living in contentment but resist the comparison. We always compare of what we have.But are we happy comparing our self to others?

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