Stop competing with other. Start competing with yourself.

“STOP COMPETING WITH OTHERS. START COMPETING WIT YOURSELF.”

I remember my very first boss, Mr Richard Newman. A man who could reduce me to tears with his criticism but a man who I am eternally grateful to putting on track in my career. I remember there being three or more people at my level or just above that I spent many minutes (He was not a man to waste time on trivial things like my mind and the tricks it would play on me!) in his office talking about why this or that wasn’t fair because I thought I was working harder and being given twice the work as anyone else.

I remember him looking at me once and just saying, “Why do you care what they are doing? The only thing you should be worrying about is improving your ability every single day. You have just wasted, how ever long you have been obsessing over this, about people who will not help you improve, you will not remember them in years to come and who will probably not even be in this business in a few years. You have the talent to be good but unless you put that energy to better use you will end up in a job you hate comparing yourself with every single person you meet rather than fulfilling your potential.” His voice always grew louder as he neared the end of a sentence. He never yelled but the emphasis was obvious that ‘I am not waiting for an answer, this conversation is over! So go and think about what I said before you open your mouth again. I look back on some of the moments I spent listening to Richard go through what can only be described as the advertising equivalent of Al Pacino speeches and I smile. A great man I owe so much to and whose lessons I have carried and even passed on to some people I have met. Have a creative day!

3 thoughts on “Stop competing with other. Start competing with yourself.

  1. Very good advice…I’ve been there myself and it’s just human nature to notice when one is working harder and doing double work but your boss was correct…makes me think of the Bible story where the workers hired at the last hour received the same pay as those who had worked through the heat of the day…that was very hard for me to accept as fair…but all the workers had agreed to the owners terms before starting the job. Thanks for a great post! 🙂 Love the 1st one in 4th row..two pictures in one! Love the 1st and 2nd one in the 5th row and the 1st one in the last row is beautiful! 🙂

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  2. Yes that 1st picture in the last row is beautiful. it is from the national geographic photograph of the year contest. It’s not a difficult process to create the silhouette in a photograph but to get that crisp and image and such detail is quite breathtaking.

    I agree with you about what we agree to and at the end of the day it’s what you go home to and with that is important not anything else.

    Thanks take care Alan.

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  3. Based on experience, this is so hard as I have been compared to somebody else. Funny how it is that I am not fond of comparing myself with others but those around me do! Talk about lack of appreciation but maybe they want to see more of me. Whatever it is, I hate it! Sorry for the word hate but I do hate it even though in the end they say that they regret not appreciating me. They make us all losers but I’m still playing to win against myself. Once I won, I think I’ll have that look on the last pic 🙂

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