Guilty of constantly comparing yourself to everyone else?
Making comparisons can be a negative habit that I feel confident in saying most people will struggle with at some point in their life. And I’d go as far as to bet it is something you find yourself doing from time to time too.
Now don’t get me wrong, comparing yourself to others can be a positive experience in some situations. You might find yourself thinking about how a colleague is getting better feedback than you, and by comparing your skill sets to another who is experiencing greater success, you can notice the areas you might need to work on to also get ahead.
Or perhaps you’re a little stuck in your business – by comparing yourself to your competition it can really open your eyes as to what is possible and act as a source of inspiration.
But today I’m talking about the darker side of comparison; the times you might negatively compare yourself to others which does nothing to boost your self-confidence or sense of self-worth.
It’s those times you walk past another woman who looks on top of the world and like she completely has her life together or the times you’re scrolling through social media and idealising the ‘perfect body’ on what seems like every woman on your feed.
It’s not a good feeling is it? And what’s scary is that this can happen daily, multiple times even, and every time you find yourself feeling a little green with envy or jealously, it chips away at your self-confidence bit by bit. Negatively comparing yourself to others is so disempowering because you can’t do anything to change what they’re doing.
But you can change what you’re doing.
But how? Well, firstly you need to take off the rose-tinted glasses. That carefree woman? Maybe she’s finally had some good news after a year of absolute hell. The ‘perfect’ woman on Instagram? What’s to say she hasn’t edited the hell out of one (of hundreds of pictures taken) criticising herself as she went? All because she felt the pressure to look ‘perfect’?
We have to stop constantly comparing our low lights to others highlights because most of the time they tell only a small part of that person’s story.
And they are often highlights of complete strangers we’ll never meet, so we really do need to ask ourselves how much we even care.
Putting it into practice
Still not convinced? Then do a quick exercise with me - close your eyes and think of a time when maybe you’ve done the same, perhaps you’ve had to plaster a smile on your face even when you’re feeling awful, for example.
Or maybe you’ve taken a picture that showed what you wanted the world to see rather than the reality (think of that cute photo of your child when half an hour before they were throwing the biggest tantrum or your ‘super organised’ house when behind the camera you have clothes scattered on your ‘floordrobe’ and washing up piled high).
Have you ever thought that other women may have noticed these things and think that your life must be glitter and rainbows 100% time too?
The next thing you need to do is remember what traits you have that are a real value of your worth (hint, it’s not how skinny you are or your relationship status!) as self-confidence really does come from inside of you rather than outside from others.
So get out that pen and paper and start to list your favourite traits about yourself (not what other people value in you) – perhaps it’s that you’re:
- are a caring mother/friend/daughter
- have lovely eyes
- a great problem solver
Now have this list somewhere you’ll always see it (on your phone perhaps?) so the next time you are met with some uncomfortable comparisons you’ll have a quick reference point of all the things you’re great at or like about yourself, that actually mean something to you.
You will always have things you wish you were better at or had more/less of, but the key to remember is everyone else will also feel like that too, because no one is perfect. So you can compare yourself to others all you like, but chances are they’ll be doing the same right back to you.
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