Quit the comparing game

Picture by Sam Manns

So many are constantly comparing themselves to others in their social group, family, people on social media, the mother’s at school, people in the same industry or business, or all of the above and more. This comparing is not helpful and is stopping people from trying new things, honouring who they are and stopping them living a rich and fulfilled life. It needs to stop.

Images of so called perfection seem to be in our faces a lot with social media. Certain body types, features, and lifestyle are admired and adored. You need to be or act a certain way to have a successful business or follow certain programs. If you don’t, god forbid, because you will fail. To be spiritual you need to fold your body into a pretzel with some crazy yoga pose, with perfect clothes hair and accessories or you need to dance around with flower crowns and wear hippy boho clothes in fields of flowers. Don’t forget the hot Adonis like partner, in the exotic location, taking the perfect picture, in the perfect moment, with the perfect food, the perfect eyebrows and makeup and tan and blah blah blah. Where likes = acceptance and follows = validation.

I know of so many people who compare themselves to these images and complain that they are not like them. But here is the thing.  Most of those people do not look like that either. Their lives are being lived not for their own enjoyment but to be Insta-worthy, notable.  We forget that images are photoshopped, manipulated, have a filter and “fixed” so the perceived flaws are removed. There may be professional makeup and hair crew which we don’t see and of course the time it takes to get that perfect “moment” which may actually take hours and lots of photos to get. Then you compare yourself when you are living, have just gotten up in the morning, or just finished your workout, or at the end of your long and hard working day and what looks back at you in the mirror, or the kids are sick and you feel like a failure as your life doesn’t look or feel like that. This standard can never be achieved, because it simply is not real! It is an illusion and it is time to wake up.

This comparing thing is on our DNA and wired into our survival programing. Back in the day when we lived in tribes, we needed to fit into that tribe for our own survival and the safety of the tribe. If we brought attention to ourselves or were very different from the tribe, then we would be cast out and shunned and often sent away from the safety of the community. Our survival depended on us conforming to a standard, so we were constantly checking to see if we were ok and safe in our conformity.

In this day and age, we don’t have those same worries and it is time for us to no longer conform to something that is destructive to our identity and the way we want to live. It is time to challenge those beliefs and stop believing the bullshit that has been feed to us.  Our uniqueness and weirdness should be accepted and seen not as a detriment to our survival but something to be encouraged and embraced.  So why are we still constantly comparing ourselves?

FEAR.

Pure and simple. We are scared that we may stand out, or not stand out enough. We are scared of our own power because we have not been taught to trust it and use it to our benefit and those around us. We have been taught that other people are our competition and not our allies. We have been taught that there is only certain things that are acceptable.  We have been taught that it is arrogant to love ourselves. We have been taught to not rock the boat, don’t speak up, and don’t have an opinion.  So we are then filled with fear that we must conform in case we do life wrong.  

Comparing yourself to others will always set you up to fail. By looking externally for validation of your inner conflict due to your lack of self-worth and self-love will continue that state of never feeling good enough.  If you take back that energy that you put out there in this form and use it to your own advantage, working on yourself and doing the inner work, imagine what you could do in the world and how you could feel about yourself? There is no magic pill, but a decision to stop hating yourself and starting to accept yourself is a great start. Do the inner work to move you out of that fear state and into acceptance and love.  Your value is an inside job.  Self-love and self-worth is an inside job, which means you are in control of it. That is pretty cool.

I challenge you that the next time you start to compare ask yourself why.  Am I uncomfortable with where I currently am?  Have I put someone’s differences above my own uniqueness when I should be loving mine? What am I fearful of? What emotions is that person triggering in me?  Can I accept that I am comparing and decide to change that thought? Acceptance of where you currently are and what you are currently feeling is a great place to start and work from. Then I want you to think about 3 things that you like about yourself or are proud of in that moment. Look at yourself in the mirror and start accepting what you see. Then slowly start to change the thoughts in your head, to more positive beliefs. Challenge those shitty thoughts, as they are not true.

There is only one you and your job is to be you fully. Not you trying to be someone else but YOU! Make a commitment to yourself today. Be kinder to yourself. Speak nicer words about yourself. Commit to changing the way you perceive yourself. Show yourself compassion and empathy. Treat yourself like your own best friend and stop being your own worst enemy. You get to choose how you think about yourself. If you need help with this, reach out and ask for support from trusted friends and family or a practitioner like me.  It is really worth the time and effort to love who you are. After all you are the one constant in your life.  Isn’t it time that you get along?

You truly are magnificent.

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