Living in a society where we are bombarded from all angles with images and stories of other people and their success, it’s pretty hard not to compare ourselves sometimes. Other people seem to have it all. I don’t just mean the popular scapegoat of imagery in the media and airbrushing. That obviously doesn’t help us feel any better about our regular Joe bodies, but it’s everywhere. Facebook and twitter remind us daily about how much fun everybody else is having. How well everybody else is coping. How great their lives are. We bump into people in the street, they look fantastic. Sound fantastic. Everybody else seems to be living the dream…
First of all, I’d like to point out that all of the above is absolute crap. Second of all, it’s the most unhealthy thing you can do which in turn will not only turn you into a bitter lemon, it’ll consume you so much that you stop focussing on yourself and what you wanted to do in the first place. You’ll start trying to live and be someone else’s idea of happy. Also keep in mind, that other people are only showing you their highlights.
I’m also human. And a woman human at that. I’m as guilty as the next person for comparing myself to others. Well I used to be. I’m a bit more accepting of how I am nowadays. Before I started this, but this has helped too. It’s just such a waste of energy. Concentrating all the time on what you’re not. It’s a negative thought pattern which just makes you feel awful. No you’re not as tall and leggy as the girl over there… But you’re not as fat and dumpy as the girl over there. No you’re not as artistic as the person over there… But you’re not as cack handed as that one. We will always be in the middle. Always. No matter how great or terrible we are! Therefore you can’t possibly win the painful comparison game.
Then there’s the thought – What are we even comparing ourselves for? Trees don’t do it. Flowers don’t do it. Pretty sure the ocean doesn’t compare itself to the sky. Nor the sun to the moon. They just get on with it. Animals too. Lady lions aren’t cat fighting because ones fluffier than the other. Why are we so hell bent on doing it and making ourselves feel inferior? Comparing ourselves with someone else is an inaccurate and irrelevant measuring stick. You’re comparing your inner self, your insecurities, with somebody else’s outer self. Their public face. When we ask somebody how they are, they usually respond in a positive manner. They’re fine or great. They may reel off highlights of recent achievements. It’s not really common practice to share more intimate details and emotions. I cried myself to sleep the other night because my boyfriend was an idiot. I feel really freaking lost right now. I feel like a failure most days. I’m not good enough. We save that for ourselves. Sometimes I feel like giving some of my children away. You know. We just smile and say its all dandy.
Women are particularly good at this. I don’t know why. We should be united. Whats the deal with women making other women feel rubbish? I mean, I guess it’s an ego thing. The woman on top gets a boost. It’s not nice. Stop it. Your face is your face is your face. Deal with it. Unfortunatley, it is in our human nature to need to quantify ourselves. To know where we are on the perceived scales of success. Luckily, we can retrain the way we do this.
From now on, rather than comparing yourself to something/someone outside of yourself, compare yourself to yourself! For example, what are you doing in your life now that you couldn’t have even conceived doing last year or 3 years ago? See you’re already amazing. Or try, what have you done recently that you thought you could never do? What negative behaviour have you stopped engaging in that you never thought you could quit? What could you achieve if you put your mind to it? Compare yourself, only to your past self. You can only ever be better than that. It is and always will be the ONLY bench mark for you. Try this for a few days. Consciously stop comparing yourself to others, and bring it in. See how much better you suddenly feel.
‘Every block of stone has a statue inside it and it is the task of the sculptor to discover it.’ – Michaelangelo
When you stop comparing yourself to others, all inferiority and superiority just disappears. You’re free to be yourself and explore your own potential.
You’re perfect. As you are. X