Comparing yourself to others is going to cause you nothing but anxiety, confusion, and upset. I am not going to tell you, “Stop comparing”, because if it were that easy none of us would be in this position. It is super hard to not compare yourself to others.
As an Eating Disorder Therapist, Body Image, Self-Esteem and Eating Disorder Recovery Coach in Texas I am seeing a lot of clients struggling with comparison. I am totally guilty of doing this myself. I notice that when I do compare myself to others I feel anxious and full of self-doubt.
So what helps me? Great question!
When I notice I am comparing myself to others, I gently stop myself. I acknowledge what is making me feel bad and I remind myself what I am doing in the present moment that is worthy of praise. For example I recently compared myself to a colleague that is experiencing a lot of success. I felt really anxious and like I was behind. I felt pressure to get my shit together and make it work professionally. I was sitting with thoughts of failure and doubt. When I realized I was thinking this way and I was feeling anxious I asked myself, “Stephanie are you comparing yourself to so-and-so?” And the answer was yes…
I then acknowledged my colleague was killing’ it and that I hoped to be in her position at some point. I then allowed myself to evaluate how I was working and evaluated my wins in my business. This was not me being unrealistic or fooling myself. I am legit jealous of my colleagues success. However I was able to also allow myself to take inventory of what I was doing to help me experience similar success. I also had to remind myself that her journey is different than mine so it is not fair for me to compare our journeys. We are not on the same path.
Now it is your turn to practice:
When you find yourself feeling anxious and full of self-doubt ask yourself:
- Am I comparing myself to someone?
- Next acknowledge the comparison and allow yourself to feel jealous of the other person. Remember emotions are not bad. You can feel jealous, but then you must do the next step…
- Evaluate what is working for you. Evaluate your wins and ask yourself what you are doing to get yourself to a healthy place.
- Lastly, don’t forget to remind yourself that your journey is different. The person you are comparing yourself to has also struggled and their road was not clear or easy. They may have something you want, but you don’t know how healthy, easy, or pleasant it was to get there.
Your job is to take care of you, your body, and you priorities. Recall the values we discussed last week. Did you get the values worksheet? If not, email me back and let me know and I will send it to you.