Why We Should Stop Comparing Our Writing to Others

The success of your work isn’t dependent on what it compares to but how it stands alone.


Ben Hardy

3 years ago | 3 min read

I know there are better writers than me. Far better. They can write with more grace and eloquence.

There are writers who’ve mastered grammar far better than me. I know I’m not the best at grammar.

When it comes down to it, there’s always a better writer. There’s always a more experienced writer. If I had a Ph.D. in English, wrote 25 books on the English language, and won the Nobel prize in English, there would probably still be writers better than me.

But as writers, we shouldn’t think about who’s better than us. We shouldn’t compare our writing to the work of other writers.

I understand sometimes we can’t help it. It’s the same reason we compare our friends and followers on Facebook and Instagram, we can’t help but see our status in comparison to other people.

But we should stop caring about that. Don’t define yourself in comparison to others. Don’t let it hold you back from blogging or publishing. Don’t let it stop you from starting the first sentence of your first article.

Because when you start writing, people will read.

Writing Makes You a Thought-Leader

Writing is an opportunity to be unique. You have an opportunity to be a thought-leader.

The more you write, the more you learn what to say and how to say it.

Yes, we all suck at writing when we initially start out. We suck because we write like a stream of consciousness — we just let the world know who we are.

It’s like going to your first-ever party and not knowing anybody. If you’re like me, your awkward, don’t know who to talk to and maybe Irish-goodbye the party. But eventually, you meet some people and find your group. You meet people who genuinely like talking to you rather than making small talk.

Then eventually you host your own party with that group. You become the leader and you know who you want and how you want your party.

Writing is the same way. We write awkwardly at first, sometimes without a clear purpose because we are eager to finish and publish.

Yet in time, we learn how to write with a clear purpose. We learn more about our niche and who we’re writing for. We become the thought-leaders, the person who hosts the party, and who everyone wants to talk to.

We become thought-leaders because we learned by experience, by making mistakes, by taking out the small talk and replacing it with quality words that mean something.

We become thought-leaders because we are willing to try over and over again. And that’s how we learn and master what we’re saying.

The More You Write, the More You Learn

If you can write an article every week or every day, you’ll learn something about yourself and the people who read your work.

You’ll learn what you like to write. You’ll learn more about your voice in the writing process than anything else.

The more you write, the more you discover the character of your writing — what makes it unique to your readers.

You’ll discover how sincere you are as a writer or someone who makes tons of pop culture references that nobody laughs at.

Your voice is your personality, how you’re distinct from every other writer. Some writers want to every perfect sentence with every perfect detail. But often leave out their voice, which is what attracts the reader.

The more you write, the more you learn to write in your voice.

Your voice may not appeal to everyone. But you shouldn’t care about that because it’s your experience.

We should stop trying to become writers who make 100k a year. We should stop trying to become the next Stephen King. Because we will most likely fail. We need to stop trying to mimic another writer’s voice.

Instead, we should master our voice. We should master what we want to say and how we want to say it. We shouldn’t try to mimic the host of another party, we should try to create our own party.

Readers Care About What You Have to Say

It’s hard to stop comparing ourselves to the people with a mass following. The success of our writing isn’t dependent on how large our audience is, it’s dependent on why we care about what we write.

It doesn’t matter if you have 10k followers. It doesn’t matter if you’re just starting out as a writer.

What matters is that you need to start believing in your work and how it can help one person.

Your goal should be to create honest, trustworthy, and helpful content that can help one person.

Originally published on medium.


Created by

Ben Hardy

Dr. Benjamin Hardy is an organizational psychologist and bestselling author of Willpower Doesn’t Work and Personality Isn't Permanent. His blogs have been read by over 100 million people and are featured on Harvard Business Review, New York Times, Forbes, Fortune, CNBC, Cheddar, and many others. He







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