It’s easy to compare yourself to others. It’s easy to look at your PhD colleagues and wonder why you aren’t as competent, far advanced or as confident as them.
I’ve talked before in these posts about the dangers of comparing your insides to other people’s outside, but I want to expand on that today.
The reason it’s so fruitless if because of the iceberg illusion. With an iceberg, what you see above the surface of the water is only a fraction of the total mass. Beneath the surface is a far greater volume, but it’s hidden from view.
And in life, people’s successes and achievements are only the things people see above the surface. What other people don’t see is what lies beneath the surface. You don’t see their persistence, failures, disappointments, hard work, good habits and dedication.
In other words, people might look great on the outside, but you don’t see all the effort, hard work and failings that go on behind the scenes.
Bear that in mind next time you find yourself comparing yourself to others.