You’ve heard the saying that comparison is a trap. Even more today as social media makes it so easy to compare our reality to the reality on our screen. We forget that photoshop exists, and our mind believes what we see. It’s easy to compare our now to someone else’s now. But, do we know the whole story? Our life experiences have brought us each to a certain point in our lives, and really, there is no comparison.
The only thing that we can compare is how we are showing up in the world. Maybe you wake up a little early and have a little more time to make it to work. Awesome job. Maybe you sleep in and hurry out the door. Good job, you got out of the door. Be kind to yourself. Even if you compare yourself to the version that you want to be, remember you are human and deserve grace. You deserve to treat yourself like your best friend would treat you. What words are filling your mind? Negative or uplifting thoughts?
I recently saw a friend’s social media post that she had recently run a mile in 7:30. First of all, awesome! Second of all, I don’t think I could do that… it’s been forever since I’ve run that fast! Third, well, if she can do that, I can too. Well, I can at least run a mile. So, I used her running to motivate myself to put on my running shoes, find a new trail, and just get going. And I realized that I really enjoy it, and it’s so nice to get outside and exercise. Did I run a mile in 7:30? No. Will I run a mile in 7:30? Maybe, but I’m not really sure that’s my goal. And, as I was running up and down hills, I realized that I didn’t even know the running conditions or terrain my friend ran her mile on. My friend had definitely been training, and I have no idea how long she had been running in order to achieve that time. What’s the use of comparing my first day running up and down hills to her run? My path is filled with many turns, and unless I ask her, I have no idea what her path is filled with. So, the comparison doesn’t even make sense.
It’s also important to listen to your intuition and know your next best step. Listen to what feels best for you. I was once hiking with some friends, and they chose to run up a big hill. I wasn’t feeling it, and I decided to take the slower paced scenic walk. They got up the hill faster and got more of a cardio workout, and that’s awesome because it was their goal. When I took the slower journey, I saw the butterflies, frogs and flowers that they missed. My goal was to be more present and take it all in, and I achieved that. Is either way better than the other? No, we both got to the top, and we both had different goals for our journey. That’s the cool thing about our lives. We get to choose our journey and pace. And know that some days racing feels great, but some days a slow and steady pace is what we need. EIther way, you are exactly where you need to be at this moment.
So, the next time you begin to compare yourself to someone else or even the person that you think you should be, take a moment to pause. We have no idea what is going on in anyone else’s lives unless we ask. We may see others at the top of their game, but we missed out all the hours and tears they put in. You are doing great. You are doing better than you think you are. And I bet someone is watching. And you may not realize it, but you may be inspiring someone else. How are you showing up in the world? Are you giving yourself the grace that we all deserve? Are you doing your best, and knowing that your best one day may mean something completely different the next day. Keep on going. You can do it.
Podcast episode below:)