Lesson Learnt from a Bicycle Rider on a Highway

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source: istockphoto.com
source: istockphoto.com

So the other day, I was watching the cars passing by on the main street under our house – a strange pastime of mine – and I saw a guy riding a bicycle on the highway. Cars kept on appearing from view and disappearing as they rounded the corner, and the guy was cycling at a very leisurely pace. I wondered how he felt moving at a snail’s pace in the dust  comparison with cars passing by at 100 kph at least.

But then again, can you compare the legpower of an average male with the horsepower of an engine? This guy made me see that sometimes in life, we really need to stop comparing ourselves to the people around us. Some may be prettier, smarter, have better jobs, or more friends, and we might be inclined to do preposterous things in an attempt to compete with them. But we need to remember that each one of us has a unique set of talents and qualities that makes us who we are.

Some might claim that comparing ourselves with others can be quite motivating, and it could be true to some extent, but at some point or another, frustration begins to set in, because wherever you are in life, someone will always be in a better position, and for every ounce of motivation we might get, we risk the chance of getting a pound of frustration, helplessness and worse of all, ingratitude and envy.

So sometimes it’s best for someone to make an inventory of their strengths and weaknesses, work hard to compete with himself, and be better than they were yesterday.

Hadeeth of the Day

عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه قال: قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : “انظروا إلى من هو أسفل منكم. ولا تنظروا إلى من هو فوقكم؛ فهو أجدر أن لا تَزْدروا نعمة الله عليكم” متفق عليه.

Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “Look at those who are lower than you and do not look at those who are higher than you. That is more likely to prevent you underestimating the blessing of Allah on you.” [Agreed upon]

Hadeeth translation source: http://www.sunnipath.com/library/Hadith/H0004P0055.aspx


4 thoughts on “Lesson Learnt from a Bicycle Rider on a Highway

    최다해 gongjumonica said:
    December 18, 2012 at 1:14 am

    Wow. This is such an inspiring post. I agree that no matter how hard we try, someone can still best us at some points. So what we need to do is just live our life the way we want it without comparing ourselves to others. In the end, we can look back at those years we spent happily.

    […] yourself comparing yourself to other people (I’ve written about it in a previous note – Lesson Learnt from a Bicycle Rider on a Highway – so I won’t write about it here). Since you don’t trust yourself, you try to measure […]

    […] 4) Don’t look inside other people’s boxes. It’s easy for us to compare our lives with the lives of others, especially with social media around. But comparing your life with that of others only lowers your self-esteem and makes you doubt your choices. So instead of peeking at what other people have in their boxes (figuratively of course), just focus on yours. Focus on your own roles, your own relationships, your own life. I’ve written about this before; the only person worth competing with is yourself. […]

    […] Once I was staring out the window at the highway right nine stories below, and I saw this guy cycling along the highway, cars zooming by. As I wrote about it here; https://ahechoes.wordpress.com/2012/12/17/lesson-learnt-from-a-bicycle-rider-on-a-highway/ […]

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