Today, in the #ImNotSorry Movement Facebook Group I came across this post;
And it made me realize that I needed to address something I don’t think I have addressed quite yet. (Thank you so much, Allison for this post!)
SELF-ESTEEM & COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS
The best thing I have ever learned in life, is you HAVE to stop comparing yourself to other people. It KILLS your self-esteem when you do. In this day and age we are so engrossed with social media and other people’s lives. I suppose it’s the nature of the beast in the digital age. (I love looking at people’s lives on social media! It’s fun to engage this way!) But with this engrossment, comes some negative side effects.
We watch these people whom we believe have “perfect lives” post about the things they do each day. We watch them and never see a “bad” post by them. It makes us start to believe that they have the “perfect life”. That their lives are so full of happiness and that’s where the envy comes from. These people post about the fun things they do as a family, or with their friends. They seem to post the most flawless pictures of themselves or their family. They seem to lead the lives that we all want. The “perfect, happy” lives we all dream of having.
That envy forces us to being to wallow in self-pity and ultimately DESTROY’S our self-esteem. We start thinking things like “If only I were prettier”, “I wish I was as skinny as that girl”, “He’s so lucky he gets to travel around the world and I can’t afford to do that.” “This family has the perfect life.” “I wish I was a better mom.” … I think you get the point.
These thoughts are NEGATIVE thoughts that actually cause us to slow down or completely stop chasing after our dreams. These thoughts are the thoughts that hold us back in life.
NO ONE HAS A “PERFECT” LIFE
That person that you envy so much, the one with the seemingly “perfect” life is more than likely going through some of the same struggles that you face day in and day out. That person that you think has the “perfect” body or is the “picture-perfect family” is probably spending their time thinking about the same things you are. Or maybe not, but they are more than likely struggling in some sort of aspect of their life. Maybe right before they posted that picture of themselves that seems “perfect” they took 200 photos and edited it. And maybe they still aren’t even happy with the photo. Maybe that family you see posting about the fun things they do all day were fighting minutes before that post was up. Maybe that mom you envy is dealing with depression or anxiety and doesn’t actually ever leave the house.
Most of the time people don’t post about the bad things they are going through. So we only see the good in people’s lives. We don’t see the unhappy pictures, we don’t see the unhappy posts. We don’t see that the couple we envy is actually struggling to hold onto their marriage. They might post selfies together that make them look so happy, but in reality the husband or wife is thinking of filing for divorce.
That old saying, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” is something we need to hold on to each and every day.
MAKE YOUR LIFE POSITIVE
The minute you stop comparing yourself to other people. The minute you get rid of the “I’m not enough” thoughts and you replace them with self-love and self-acceptance, is the minute you can turn your life into a positive one.
“I wish I were prettier”
“I am beautiful.”
“I wish I had that person’s life.”
“That’s really cool they climbed Mount Everest. I’m going to put that on my bucket list.”
The minute you STOP comparing yourself to others, is the minute you will begin to love yourself. The more you uplift other people, the more you can improve your life.
I challenge you to be happy for other people and stop comparing yourself to others. I challenge you to uplift others. And I challenge you to think about what might be happening in someone else’s life when they post that “perfect” picture or talk about all the great things happening in their lives.