Ever since I was little I have spent way too much time comparing myself to others. I have no idea why I do this to myself. It uses up so much energy and is such a terrible thing to do. I have found myself wishing I was more athletic, in better shape, craftier, smarter, prettier, more musical, funnier, etc, etc.
Sometimes it makes me wonder where society has developed this sense of the ideal person. Why are some people so inconsiderate and unkind to those that don't fit the perfect mold? Why can one comment from someone stick with us for years and years?
When I was little I was constantly teased about having a long neck. For years I tried to change my posture so that it wouldn't look so long. I'd hunch my shoulders and bend my chin down.
I was also teased for being skinny. The words, "Don't you ever eat?" "You're too skinny" and "curvy girls are prettier" always made me feel terrible. I have tried anything and everything to gain weight and nothing works and I have pretty much grown to accept it by now.
I have also felt really insecure about my skin. It is definitely not flawless. Ever since hitting puberty I have had terrible periods. TMI? Sorry. Because of that I have been on every hormone, pill, injection, etc to try to make things more tolerable. Because of that my skin freaks out. Painful hormonal acne on my jawline and neck has caused me way more tears than it should. I would call off plans, cancel dates, and put off running errands out of embarrassment.
Now in my adult years it drives me nuts that I am still comparing myself to others. I realized how caught up in it I was when I went with my husband on a business trip to NYC. I was surrounded by successful women who were really making it in the business world. I felt like I was surrounded by power couples. Wives going to law school, medical school, excelling in the business world, etc. I hoped nobody asked me what I was doing because I felt insignificant. I didn't want to say that I was finishing up school online in a family oriented degree or that I went through a master aesthetician program. It wasn't prestigious enough and that really bothered me.
blogging is such a wonderful creative outlet for me it has also caused me to spend way too much time criticizing myself. Sometimes people tend to glamorize life and it can really make you feel like you aren't doing enough. Anytime I have tried to DIY it ends up in the garbage, I don't have new trendy clothes and outfits, I don't cook incredible meals every night, drive a fancy car, or have an eye turning fabulous home. In reality I wear jeans and a t-shirt every day but Sunday, almost all of our furniture is used and doesn't match, most of my meals are thrown together and super basic, and I certainly do not have perfect hair and makeup done every day.
What I have realized is that this is my problem. Not anybody else's. It is up to me to change my way of thinking and to gain some confidence. I should be proud of the things I have accomplished. I should be confident in who I am both physically and mentally. I have found the less time I spend focusing on myself and comparing myself the more time I have to improve myself and improve my relationship with God. When I focus on serving others I think less about myself and in turn I am much happier.
What do you do to focus less on yourself and focus more on others? What has helped you overcome this problem?