Mommy competitions have been around for probably as long as there have been two mommies in the same town. There are stay-at-home moms versus working moms. And breast-feeding moms versus formula feeding moms. And that's just the beginning. Women tend to compete and compare when it comes to everything, including mommyhood. But this type of behavior is destructive to our friends, to ourselves, and to women everywhere. The good news is that mommy wars can be avoided.

Get Happy

When a mom starts boasting about her child's achievements, don't start listing off everything wonderful your own child is up to. Just smile and compliment her child. Telling her how great it is that her son just took his first step, even if he's younger than your still-crawling child, will stop the competition before it starts.

Choose Wisely

Just because the mom down the street has children the same age as yours, doesn't mean she's the best person to be friends with. If there's a mom in your life who is constantly bragging and comparing, stop hanging out with her. Instead, choose to spend time with moms you can relate to, moms who don't compare, and moms who have similar values to yours.

Hold Your Tongue

Don't be so quick to hand out advice unless another mom has asked for your opinion. Sometimes moms just want to vent about their sleepless nights. It's likely they've tried every trick in the book to get their child to sleep. If you give another mom advice that she doesn't want, she may end up with either anger or hurt feelings as a result. This is the perfect setting for mommy wars.

Know Your Milestones

Every child develops at her own rate. As long as you and your child's doctor are happy with her progression, you should be happy too. It doesn't matter what Joey down the street is doing compared to your child. It only matters that your child is progressing at an appropriate rate.

Accept the Differences

Even your best friend in the world is going to have different mothering techniques than you do. And truthfully, no matter what you say about why organic baby food is best, she's going to do what she wants to do. Even if you think formula feeding is much easier than breastfeeding, she might think the opposite. And even exact opposite ways of thinking can be right. To each her own. So rather than tell her how she's wrong and risk ruining your friendship, have some fun at the park together instead.

Mommy wars are always going to exist, but you don't have to participate. Quit comparing, quit giving unwanted advice, and focus on your own child. It's the best way to be the best mom to your child because it will keep you from transferring your mommy pressures to your child.