Quote #59

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”
– Ernest Hemingway

I’m doing two today because I feel like this one goes nicely with the previous one. Well, and the one before that. And several others.

As humans, we often compare ourselves to others. The problem is when that behavior results in someone concluding that they are better (or more important) than someone else.

Even if you were to achieve actual superiority over someone else (not sure this is possible), there is nothing noble in doing so. It is a selfish, immature endeavor that cannot make you an inherently better person. The sum of your efforts, all revolving around another person, will be that you are better than someone that you had no need (or ability, really) to compare yourself with.

It may seem like a more self-centered view, but the only person that matters in the race for superiority is you. The only person you can truly measure is yourself.

You may be comparing yourself with your neighbor and you may one day declare yourself to be superior to him. But his life is different from yours. He may be up against challenges that you know nothing about. Without his unique situation to accompany your efforts, what have you gained from feeling superior to him? All you’ve managed to do is belittle him in your own view, judging him without the full picture.

But you can judge your own self. You have the full picture of your own life. Use that to your advantage. Take a hard look at the you of the past and challenge yourself to being superior to that person. And do it again tomorrow. Do it every day.

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