Why You Should Only Ever Compete With Yourself

Let’s face it, running a business is really daunting and looking at the direction of other businesses for comparison or trying to copy what they have done will bring you out of focus in your own business.  When you are out of focus on your own business, this can be detrimental to your own success. 

Listen to this episode and hear from Annette her reasons why it is not worthwhile to compete with others and what you should do otherwise.

Here are a few insights you’ll hear in today’s show…

  • What is the first reason why comparing yourself with other businesses will not work? (...What do you need to do instead?)
  • Why is comparing your business with others a waste of time and energy?
  • What is the point in comparing yourself with other people's businesses of which you do not have control?
  • Learning from others, not copying them is the better way rather than competing.


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Welcome to the Financial and Lifestyle Freedom podcast. In today's episode, I want to talk to you about something that's really important to all of us. And that is competing with ourselves. Because a lot of us get caught up in comparing our businesses to others out there. I know that I certainly have in the past, but if we do that we're only sabotaging ourselves. So in today's episode, I'm going to explain why it's so important to only ever compete with yourself, and how ultimately you can use that to fuel your business's growth.

Hello, everyone, my name is Annette Ferguson, I am CEO of Annette and Co, a UK based accounting firm. I am a chartered accountant, certified Profit First professional and small business growth strategist. Thank you so much for tuning in to the Financial and lifestyle Freedom podcast today.  So like I mentioned, today, we are speaking about why you should only ever compete with yourself. 

What is the first reason why comparing yourself with other businesses will not work?  (...What do you need to do instead?)

And here is the first reason.  Ultimately, you'll be less stressed out if you don't worry about what other people are doing. I know it's easier said than done  because trying to compete with other small business owners and even bigger business owners than ourselves, can be exhausting and is usually, to be honest, fruitless.

Not only will you likely be unable to keep up anyway. But even when you do see some success, it won't bring the same satisfaction as competing with yourself because competing with someone else just means you're always going to be a step behind them. You're comparing yourself to them, you're emulating what they do, but you can only do that once they've done it. And no one is better at pushing your own boundaries and achieving your own personal goals than you are.

So focusing on yourself is significantly more important. The sense of satisfaction that comes with self competition reverberates much further than any competition between businesses. And in reality, it carries a much lower risk of stress and frustration. So put others out of your mind and focus on what your business can achieve. 

Why is comparing your business with others a waste of time and energy?

And the second reason why we shouldn't be focusing on competing with others is, it's a waste of time and energy to compare yourself to others. And comparison is ultimately the thief of joy. It's easy to feel overwhelmed when you compare yourself to other businesses out there. You might start to doubt the worth of your business. But here's the thing.

Comparison is nothing but a major energy drain and can be damaging to your own motivation as an entrepreneur. After all, why compete with someone else when you have no control over their circumstances or resources. Instead of joining the competitive rat race, focus on challenging yourself and your business objectives. That is what will bring you success and joy.

The good news is that when you're focused on improving your own foundations, it keeps things simple. Competing only with yourself brings joy rather than stress. So stay focused on you, keep growing and forget about the competition. 

What is the point in comparing yourself with other people's businesses of which you do not have control?

And the third reason, focusing on your own business will make you better at what you do and who doesn't want that? You might have competed fiercely with other businesses in your sector in the past, but what if I told you that the key to the success that you want, may just lie in competing only with yourself because taking this approach allows you to focus on your own business, setting personal goals and continually seeking new ways for your business to improve.

Focusing on honing existing processes will keep you an expert in your trade and offering customers the very best service to ensure that your reputation as an outstanding business person grows. Plus, who likes feeling like they're in a race all the time. Competing with yourself is surely less stressful. 

Learning from others, not copying them is the better way rather than competing.

And finally, you can learn from other businesses but don't copy them. Remember, you can only determine your success. It's easy to compare your progress with other businesses but instead of trying to copy what makes them successful, focusing on improving yourself is much better.

By constantly challenging yourself and setting realistic goals, you will have more control over reaching your potential and unlocking new opportunities than you ever will trying to copy someone else. Doing this also allows for organic growth and utilizing your unique skill set. You won't ever find yourself having to artificially recreate something that's already out there, or trying to mold yourself into being someone else.

So put aside the temptation of competing with others as it isn't productive or beneficial in the long term, just channeling your energy into becoming the best version of you and never stop believing in yourself. Because competition between small business owners can be healthy and encourage even more innovation, however, it is essential to remember that you should always focus on competing with yourself first and foremost.

Self competition will drive you to continually improve your business so that you remain ahead of the game in an ever changing market. It's also important to know when enough is enough and not be too hard on yourself. It's completely okay to change tact or strategy. Implement a strategy for success that includes taking time out to rest and recharge, stepping back from the external or internal pressures and watch your business succeed. 

Thank you so much for tuning in today to the Financial and Lifestyle Freedom Podcast. I hope that you got great value from the session today. And please do leave us a review in whichever podcast player you happen to be listening in.

Reviews are the way that other incredible business owners are able to find the podcast, so it would mean a huge amount to me if you could leave us a review. Please, also, if you've not already, do remember and subscribe to the podcast, as well, on whichever podcast player is your favorite. Thank you again for tuning in and I will speak to you all really soon. Take care. 

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About the Author

Owner of Annette & Co. - Chartered Accountants & Certified Profit First Professionals. Helping online service-based entrepreneurs find clarity in their numbers, increase wealth and have more money in their pockets.

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