Mirror Mirror, who is the best?

Nandini Priya Rabelli
4 min readDec 16, 2019


On one beautiful breezy evening when I was doing Yoga at our office terrace I had this “ Aha moment — of how blissful my life was & started thinking what more do I really need”.

My life seemed to have all the elements of a balanced happy life. I was able to take time for my physical health, spend quality time with my 2-year-old, enjoy my work, spend family with family & friends.

Yet, the moment I shift from viewing my life independently to viewing my life in comparison to that of others, everything changes. If I go to FB & notice others' lives who have better careers, or a better lifestyle. Suddenly, my life from being happy & extremely content falls to being unhappy & feeling short.

Have you had this experience? That you felt so happy & thrilled to get a 30% hike due to your hard work & negotiation. However, after you get to know that the others with the same experience were getting higher pay, do you still remain happy?

This according to me is the first malady of comparison. That

“ We make OUR happiness a function of others/other people”.

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And after getting a feeling that our lives are disappointments what do we do? Our typical reaction is to analyze the reasons for other’s success & we would make other’s goals as ours. We would make other’s journeys to success as ours.

For this reason, we see many in India taking up Engineering. Not because a student is interested in the subject. But because he/she or their parents must have seen a senior or a neighbor among their acquaintances ending up with a seemingly comfortable lifestyle due to this career path.

This comparison is extremely shallow & ignores the complete picture. We are not taking into consideration other’s likes, dislikes or strengths & aspirations each of which could be different for one another. Yet we are trying to push everyone towards a benchmark set by others FOR others.

This according to me is the 2nd malady of comparison. That

“We are wasting our time chasing the wrong dream, following a wrong path”.

If only parents spent a little more time in understanding their children’s strengths.

If only our education system enabled the students to know their strengths more clearly.

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Unconsciously we are fed with this ideology right from our birth & it keeps growing with us at every phase of our lives. And I realized I was doing this already with my 2.5-year-old daughter.

I was comparing her weight & the quantity of food she eats with what other kids I see around eat & in turn feel disappointed with her. I was conveniently ignoring all the other beautiful things she does. She brushes her teeth by herself, she doesn’t cry when I leave her at school, she has had such an understanding personality due to which I was able le to join back the work which I enjoy since she was 4 months.

This according to me is the 3rd & the most concerning malady of comparison. That

“ We miss out noticing the GOOD & UNIQUE ASPECTS in ourselves, we miss to understand who we really are & what we really want, what our strengths are.’’

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Does this mean we stop comparing? Maybe Not. Comparison can help us grow, aspire & improve IF we do it the right way. This is what I learned after some observation

First of it being,

Let’s compare ourselves with our yesterday.

Let’s change the narrative of asking “ Mirror Mirror who is the best?” to asking “ Mirror Mirror who is the best, is it Yesterday’s me or Today’s me?”

The second being,

Please pause & reflect.

Please pause & reflect, whenever you are comparing yourself or your loved one with someone else.

Please pause & reflect, whenever your decisions or actions or thoughts are derived out of comparison from others.

Get into the details for a minute. And ask yourself, what is the ultimate reason or attribute you are looking for or want from this comparison?

For example, I admire our co-founder Kalyan’s success. That doesn’t mean I should start another start-up to be successful like him. Rather I should observe the attributes like Hard work, Consistency, Discipline which were key to his success. I should discover my own path & just implement those attributes in my journey, then I too would succeed.

So, don’t follow their success path or goal. Compare & follow the attributes.

Life is NOT a zero-sum game. Where success & happiness is limited or meant for only a certain number of people. Each of us can be successful & happy provided we take a path that is meant for us. Provided we make the best use of life by understanding our uniqueness or purpose in life.

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Earlier I used to tell my daughter “Leela eat these vegetables, look at Arjun he is eating all of them.”

Now I have changed my conversation with Leela. I tell her “ Leela eat this because you love to lift things, you love to climb monkey bars. You need strength for that which comes if you eat”.

I have stopped saying to her “ Eat because we all are eating”.



Nandini Priya Rabelli

Believer in the need to bring awareness around Education, Mindful parenting, Sustainable lifestyle and in the magic that community brings.