Hey there, friends and welcome to another episode of this podcast. Today I have been on a realness kick. This podcast episode is going to follow along the same lines as that. I love this space that I have created here, because I can be real, open, and honest with you and I don’t get to know who listens or cares for that matter. Unless you tell me that you are listening. On this episode, I want to chat about something that has been weighing heavily on my heart these last couple weeks.
I have a little hidden secret, one that I wish I could turn off with the click of a switch. One that I wish would go away or wither away like the plants I forget to water. One that I am not proud of, but sharing it makes me more human and that is irreplaceable. Take a listen to this episode, all about my little hidden secret.
Sometimes I feel like the people I listen to on other podcasts are untouchable, not authentic enough for me, or they are out of my league. But, I still find myself listening to them week after week, episode after episode being starstruck and just wanting to hang on their every word. In case you couldn’t tell, I mainly listen to business/entrepreneur minded podcasts, all done by an individual or a group of people who have made it big time. If that is what you are here for, that is not what I am all about. I want you to know that I have never been nor will ever become someone like that.
I am a small town girl through and through, the most famous I have ever been was in my small town newspaper for a project I did in 3rd grade for a science fair, my high school honor roll and college dean’s list, our engagement announcement, and when I got hired for my full time job. Other than that, I like to keep a low key, fly under the radar, kind of lifestyle. But, yet I get caught up in my evil little hidden secret of comparison. I hate it, it’s not attractive and frankly I find it a giant crutch in my life.
Comparison is the thief of all joy and I can tell you more often than not it has stolen my joy right out from under me. My little hidden secret has sucked the wind right out from my sails on more times than I care to admit. How many times have you thought to yourself while perusing social media, I wish I had hair like hers, or her office is so cute and mine isn’t. That right there is stealing all your joy away. You were content with your office and hair minutes before, but once you see something shinier, brighter, or better you are too quick to cast aside what was your joy for the hopes of obtaining something “better”. You can’t see me but I put the word better in air quotes, because it really isn’t better you just think it is at that point in time.
Now, I am a comparisonholic if I can make up a word. I find myself looking at pictures and thinking ugh I should be doing that with Aria or ugh I should really buy my husband something that he needs because so and so did this or so and so is doing that. What I am really doing to myself is spinning my own wheels and making myself feel less than someone else. But, I find myself doing this more often than not. What about you? Do you look at someone else’s pictures and think we should be doing that too. What if someone gets a new car? Does that make you feel like you need a replacement too? That right there is comparison stealing all your joy. Your car or activity was good enough for you moments before, but now all of a sudden it isn’t.
I have slowly become to realize that comparison is not a habit that is easy to break. In fact, I am still struggling with it, but am more aware of when I am starting to fall into that rabbit hole. For me, that makes me realize that I need to put the phone or computer down and come back to it later or maybe never.
I am not here to give you ways to cope with your comparisonistic ways because I don’t have it figured out either. What I am going to do is tell you that it is deep within our innate human ways to compare ourselves to others. I mean think about, ever since we were born someone has been compared to. Either you were compared to your relatives, neighbors, or friends. It may not have been said aloud but at some point in time you were compared to others or you might have compared yourself to others.
Think about that time in elementary school when one of your friends did better than you on a test or maybe you did better than your friends. There was probably some comparison going on. How about when you or maybe one of your friends found that perfect dress to wear to the next dance? You know what I’m talking about, that nice little dress that makes her or your figure look so dang good. Uh huh we have all been there. Suddenly your dress didn’t quite measure up and you thought about throwing in the towel and not going to the dance at all. Trust me, everyone has been there. Whether they own up it or not, it is a fact.
There is one thing that I have learned from all my years of comparing, it is this simple truth. You will never be truly happy if all you do is compare everything you have to someone else. Now, like I said before comparing can go two ways. You could compare yourself to someone who has more or to someone who has less.
I know you probably won’t admit. But we have all been guilty of looking up someone who hasn’t really done a lot. It could be since high school or college or where ever. This is not to just check up on them. However, more of a way to see that you are still setting the world on fire while maybe they aren’t. Just to make yourself feel better about where you are, what you are doing, and what not. This is also just as devastating to your overall health and demeanor.
Did you realize that by wasting your time and energy, looking up that person, that you are falling into a vicious cycle. The cycle goes: look them up, feel good for myself, go about my day, see someone that makes me feel less than, self pity, look that person up again and the circle repeats. Why are you wasting energy on that! You have more important things to be doing than looking up people all dang day. Am I right?!? You were not designed to be a carbon copy of someone else. In fact, what makes you unique helps make you YOU. Why would you waste your precious time on earth comparing.
It drives me crazy that I am not able to completely get rid of this habit. I still find myself looking at things and wondering if that was me or I should probably think about doing X,Y, and Z. It is a struggle that sometimes, although I hate to admit it, paralyses me from moving forward. It is so easy to do now, that I have started a brand new venture into some new and uncharted territories. I catch myself looking at the successful people I mentioned before and wondering when it’s my turn. Instead of being freaking excited for the progress made so far which has been tremendous.
If you get anything from this episode today, it’s the fact that even though I don’t have all the answers. I mean who does anyway, but I do have one thing that other people don’t. I will never stand on a pedestal and talk down to you. Nor will I ever make you feel less of a person because your path is different or your path is faster. And this is a big one, I will never make you think that my way is the only way. This episode and others are just a piece of my mind and you can take it or leave it. My little hidden secret is meant to be inspiration for you. So that you can recognize your own little secrets and come face to face with them.
If you do take my advice, comparing is a hard habit to break. As I’ve said before I haven’t mastered the way to completely stop my little hidden secret. However, one thing I have done is curb how much time I spend on social media. Probably the BEST invention on Facebook is the snooze feature. That way you don’t have to unfriend someone. But, you won’t be able to see their posts and such for however long you choose.
If you take anything else from this episode, I hope it is this. You are in charge of your own happiness. You don’t need to rely on anyone else to give you your happiness. Start today and create your own happiness. Whether that is going for a walk, planting flowers, pampering yourself, what have you. The important thing is to just go out and do what you feel would bring you the most joy. And please stop comparing yourself to others. You are glorious just the way God made you and you do not have to compare yourself to anyone! Peace, love, and baby steps friends. Here’s to breaking your my little hidden secret and yours, whatever they may be.