Jaclyn Margolis Highlights the Advantages to the Upside of Social Comparison in Psychology Today
Comparing oneself is often seen as a negative, a way people reduce their confidence. However, Jaclyn Margolis shares her expertise on how people can use comparisons as a source of inspiration and take proactive steps to reach their goals. Margolis provides four strategies as a good starting place:
- Focus on similarities -- research shows that when someone compares themselves against another person, it makes them feel worse. Instead, individuals should reframe the comparison on similarities and use it as motivation.
- Set goals -- establish personal goals and define what success looks like for each goal. Goals help individuals focus on the process and internal growth.
- Establish collaborative norms -- research has shown when people on a team focus on their own achievements, they feel worse. However, if a team is focused on aligning their goals and striving for communal action, one teammate’s accomplishments is everyone’s success.
- Don’t look to just one person -- Several role models are better than one. Combining positive attributes from a selection of people instead of a sole individual can help maintain one’s authenticity.
The full article is available in the January issue of Psychology Today Magazine.