Autumn is a remarkable season of change. It can be a chance to reflect on our lives and who we have been. It can be a chance to let go of the old and make way for the new, preparing us for a transition of growth. The problem is that part of the growing pains of this life will include finding our self-worth and identity. And, along with that journey, we are all bound to hit some bumps in the road where we fall prey to doubt.

We live in an age of comparison. We are constantly exposed to the lives of our friends, families, and acquaintances. We see their big moments, their accomplishments, and their highlight reels. And, whether we mean to do it or not, we will likely start comparing our lives to what we see. This leads to questions like: “Am I good enough?” “Why haven’t I done anything like that yet?” “Am I doing something wrong?” “Will I ever accomplish as much as them?”

But, it is so important to remember that our lives are all unique to our specific journeys. Although it’s tempting, don’t get lost in the twists and turns of another person’s path when you’re destined to walk your own. Keep your head up, keep working, and keep dreaming. When you are able to fine-tune your focus to concentrate on being the best you can be, you’ll see how much clearer everything looks as a result.

We will all have doubts. We will all be tempted to compare from time to time, but we just need to remind ourselves that there is no perfect timeline for life. There is no such thing as being behind or being ahead, there’s only living. And, you owe it to yourself to live your most authentic life and love yourself enough to honor your individual story.

We also need to remind ourselves that what we see from others is not the big picture. Every single person you meet is struggling with something, hurting in some way that they may not always share with their world. This can serve as a reminder to us to be kind and compassionate to others along the way. And, when we get more comfortable with the idea that we are all flawed beings, we can humble ourselves enough to know that none of us win when we are in hypothetical competitions with one another.

So, this autumn, learn to let go of the negative and crushing self-doubt that comes from living in a world of comparison and competition. Fall back into being the most authentic version of yourself you can be: the flawed, the hopeful, the forgiving. Show people how much better our lives can be when we cheer each other on, when we celebrate each other in these seasons of transition. The more comfortable we become in our own growth, the more comfortable we can help others feel with theirs.

We are all transforming into beautiful individuals. May we honor our own process and honor the process of others without trying to compare.

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