Happy Valentines Day!
I am so excited that you started a new self-care habit yesterday! That is awesome. We are going to build on our foundation today. One of the things that holds us back or sets us back in loving ourselves unconditionally is comparison. Comparison is the C word. When we use what others show us as a yard stick for our own lives, success or happiness it is going to be damaging. Comparison is sneaky though. Sometimes it’s blatant and you can catch yourself. Other times it’s sneaky and you don’t realize this is what happened until (or if) you evaluate your reaction and feelings at a later point.
It is easy to spot when you are looking at all the gifts someone on Instagram was purchased for Valentines day and you grumble about it (just me?). In that case you can say, I am comparing, I am happy for them and what is happening in their life doesn’t affect my life. It’s harder when the comparison isn’t so clear, you just kinda feel bad based on something you observed, and then have to take a minute and ask yourself why your mood changed.
Comparison crops up in a lot of ways. Has this ever happened to you….. you are completely content with your day, your outfit, yourself…and then you are online and see something someone else is doing and suddenly you feel sad, or that you should be doing something differently, or that you need to lose 10-20-50lbs or shouldn’t be wearing those shoes? Right. Me too, and I hate it. But here is the good news. Comparison is all about you. No matter what other people choose to project outward towards us, we are in full control of how we react. So yes, comparison is something you can eliminate from your mindset. Isn’t that great news.
How do we eliminate comparison? First, recognize when it’s happening. When you catch yourself it gives you an opportunity to explore what it was that made you compare, and why you felt a certain way. Then you can let that feeling go. Second, remember that you don’t know what is going on in anyone else life and that thought they may have a giant pile of presents, they might have been though some really tough things that makes this holiday significant, or the bags may be staged, or they may be in mounds of credit card debt and feel trapped. Third, focus back on you, make a mental note of your accomplishments, joys and values and be happy in that.
Bonus action – Its time to let go. If there is someone in your life, either IRL or online, that only shows you the highlight reel….let them go. Today we choosing to not let those influences in. On Facebook you can just unfollow someone so their seemingly Pinterest perfect life doesn’t invade your news feed. On Instagram they won’t know if you unfollow them either. Pick a few that don’t bring anything to the table for you and let it go. Because Instagram is my favorite social media (@EmilyDBakerEsq) you can search a # of something you love like… #GoldenRetriever and find some accounts that share adorable puppies….follow them like @goldens_ofInstagram.
I also want to note that loving yourself where you are is key to this. It’s ok if there are things you want to work on, or change. It’s ok if you are working towards the best version of you and your better life. But there isn’t room for those amazing things if you don’t first love where you are. We are talking all about gratitude tomorrow and how to love where you are at right this moment!
Let me know how this exercise pops up in your day and how it makes a difference. Have a wonderful Valentines, love yourself and I will see you tomorrow.