“Comparison is the thief of joy.” — Theodore Roosevelt.
Let me say that again; “comparison is the thief of joy.” Even though I know this, it’s incredible how often I forget. Or “forget.” I know that comparing myself to others isn’t a productive thing to do, but it is almost instinctive, and that’s disruptive: disruptive to my mental well-being, spiritual well-being, and my creative life. I struggle with this so often, and lately in particular, and I have noticed that all of these areas are suffering because of it.
Comparing myself to others does me no good. Especially because in this day and age, the way we (or a least I do) compare ourselves to one another is through social media. But social media is just the tip of the iceberg of someone’s life. Most people put their best self on their profile, which is good. However, it makes it difficult for others to look at that and think how their life isn’t as great. And the truth is, it probably is. I didn’t post on Facebook when I gained 15 pounds, but I sure did when I decided to run a half-marathon. So while we see that people are doing wonderful things with their lives, we don’t see the mundane, run-of-the-mill, boring things that they (and we all) have to do.
We must remember that Jesus said in Mark 12:31 to love our neighbors as ourselves. While most people remember the first part of this, they don’t realize that it also involves loving ourselves. So beating up on yourself because your life doesn’t look as great on social media is stealing your joy and going against what Jesus called us to do as his disciples. We often say and think things to ourselves that we would never say to anyone else. Why do we do this? Why shouldn’t we love ourselves as much as we love others? My prayer for you is that this will become easier by the day.
Knowing that I do this is the first step of this long journey for myself, but as I recognized that this comparison is something I do, I have already felt myself be better. I have felt myself feel lighter, particularly in writing this blog. Writing this blog is kind of a break to my creative slump. I can already feel that as I recognize when I’m comparing, I can (at least try) to focus on something else and tell myself that I am good enough, whether I feel it or not. And honestly, this has been a freeing thing that has opened my mind to new ways and ideas to create about.
Love your neighbors. Love yourself. Be kind to all.
Thanks for stopping by.
Blessings and love,