Are You Putting Others (Or Yourself) on a Pedestal? 8 Tips to Quit Comparison
We all have an interesting challenge to live with each and every day of our life. A challenge that can make your mind a messy, miserable place to be and your body, relationships, home, work, skill set, and life as a whole never good enough. A challenge you can feel controlled by even though you so desperately want to live an easier and happier life.
This challenge is called your ego.
You probably recognize your ego when you brag about an accomplishment, about how you did something better than someone else. Self-pride is wonderful, but not when it is belittling someone, suggesting they are less worthy in the same breath.
Yet the ego is also at work when you think you are the one who is less than someone else in some way. Either way, it is creating separation between you and everyone else, but the fact is, you are not greater or lesser than anyone.
No one is better than you—not a celebrity, a model, a successful entrepreneur, your boss, your parents, your sibling, friends…no one. Of course, by the same token, you are not better than anyone else either—not your employee, your cleaner, the waiter at your restaurant, the homeless person on your block, anyone of any other religion, race, gender, or sexuality.
Comparison has become such a deeply entrenched part of our society that it can be a tough one to let go. Even with all the knowledge and tools I have and use everyday to love myself fully and the knowledge I have that we are all one and no one is better than someone else, I still find I sometimes compare myself to others, putting value on one thing more than another. I might compare my softer belly to the girl with rock hard abs or wish my skin didn’t have the visible signs of the severe eczema I suffer.
And yet, at my core, I know I am just as amazing as everyone else is, despite how I might see myself in some moments or what the media portrays as better or more beautiful. We are all as incredible and beautiful as each other; we all simply have our own uniqueness. THAT is exactly what makes us so beautiful.
For me, comparison has even showed up in my life in the form of comparing myself to someone else who has experienced less suffering and pain. I can’t tell you how many times I have looked at someone without eczema, without pain, and with the ability to move, exercise, sweat, and dress however they like and show all their skin off in its perfection and wished I was like them. And their skin is perfect, but so too is mine, even with its signs of a hard-lived life.
The same goes for my softer belly that, even when I was at my very lowest weight, when I was very unwell in the past, still wasn’t perfectly flat. I’m not using this as an excuse, as I fully believe and know that with enough specifically-designed exercise and focus on this area, I could get a far more toned and ab-showing belly, and I believe we are limitless, yet I also acknowledge that I have used the fact of my softer belly to create separation between myself and someone else. I believed that I wasn’t as beautiful and, at the core of that, probably that I wasn’t doing enough and being enough as the woman with the “perfect” abs, even while honoring and respecting them for the dedication they have obviously put toward strengthening their body.
What a rollercoaster we put ourselves through all to suffice our ego!
The wonderful thing is that we have the power to tame the ego, to learn and practice ways to not buy into its sneaky ways, so it doesn’t hold us back from showing up in the most authentic and powerful way we can—exactly as our ourselves and proudly so.
These days, even when I have those moments of creating separation by feeling less or better than someone else, I can quickly pull myself out of this space of the ego and recognize the game going on between my ego and who I am in my core and spirit. I can laugh at myself very quickly for this craziness I have briefly participated in and come back to seeing all of us as equally perfect and amazing—as one. This dissipates any pain, embarrassment, judgment, superiority, or any other non-supportive feeling right away. Most of all, it gets me back to a space of loving myself exactly as I am and loving everyone else exactly as they are, too. It gets me back to a space of feeling immense gratitude to be part of this global family.
The fun thing is that as soon as you drop the comparison, you will enjoy your life and that moment so much more. You will be able to drop all that wasteful energy being spent on comparing and focus instead on doing what you love to do and supporting others to do the same. What a beautiful turnaround!
Here are a few simple steps to get you kicking the comparison misery and superiority when it shows up:
1. Acknowledge when you are comparing yourself to others or saying you are better or less than someone.
This isn’t always as clear-cut as saying with superiority “I am smarter than them.” or saying with misery “They have a much flatter belly than me.” Although these are certainly examples of comparison. It can also take the form of more subtle comparisons with thoughts like “What I have to say is more correct/important than what you have to say.” or “I am more special because I went through x challenging experience.”
2. Send love and give appreciation to others, no matter how much you may want to bring them down so you can temporarily feel better about yourself.
When you notice your thoughts saying you are less than someone else for x or y reason, remind yourself that you are just as amazing as everyone else. Instead of focusing on your perceived shortcomings, focus on what you love about yourself, and focus on what you appreciate about the other person/people, and compliment them either verbally or give appreciation to them in your mind. Over time, you will find you can appreciate something in someone else and be happy for her rather than belittling yourself or belittling her to make yourself feel better. This practice will also make you like yourself a hell of a lot more as you choose a more loving road!
3. Commit to being your best.
The more you show up in your life to play big, to do exactly what makes you tick in the way that makes you tick, the more comfortable and satisfied you will be being you! Therefore, you’ll be less likely to judge yourself negatively because you’re so happy being you! Celebrating your own awesomeness is a wonderful thing. It’s only when you think you are more awesome than someone else that the ego has kicked in. Instead, aim to see or believe in the awesomeness of everyone.
4. Use affirmations daily or in any moment you are in a comparison state to remind yourself there is no separation and that you and everyone else are perfect.
Here are some suggestions that may resonate, or you can write your own.
- I am perfect exactly the way I am.
- We are all one.
- I give and receive love and gratitude freely.
- There is so much beauty in me and everyone in this world.
- I love myself completely.
- I choose to think only positive and nourishing thoughts about myself and everyone else.
5. Look at your values and beliefs, and change what doesn’t serve you or is not true.
So much of what we judge others and ourselves on is automatic programming. We have created and picked up so much nonsense in our society. For example, in school, we learn that being good at math means you are smarter and, therefore, better than someone else. In truth, it’s amazing if you’re great at math and that does mean you are smart or that you work your butt off to learn it well. Which does equal you being fantastic. But so, too, does the child who expresses himself through art and sucks at math. So, too, is the child with learning difficulties who loves and gives of himself with full abandon but has no recognized abilities in the standard school system. So, too, is the trouble-making child who is stubborn and relentless. As you can see, it’s a matter of us all being unique with different strengths, weaknesses, gifts, and challenges but equally worthy and amazing. The more you notice those automatic programmings you have that result in comparison or separation, the more you can break them down and choose to see the value of yourself and others for who you/they are in all their uniqueness.
6. Make a commitment to stop gossiping and judging everyone, including yourself!
I made a commitment to do this many years ago, and it has been one of the most powerful things I have ever done. It has transformed how I think about myself, others, and life. It has increased my happiness, strength, humility, confidence, satisfaction, greatly helped my relationships and coaching work, and gives me a deep sense of peace. I am by no means a master of this all the time, but my ability to not participate in this joyless and damaging habit most of the time has given me a far more peaceful and happy experience of life.
7. Ditch the gossip magazines and media consumption.
Another choice I made is ditching all consumption of gossip magazines, TV, and news. I still enjoy a good TV series (without commercials) and love films, but I pick and choose what I wish to bring into my consciousness rather than being bombarded with constant messages that attempt to tell me what I should believe according to the industries and companies driving them—for their own profit, of course. Even if you love celebrity magazines and trashy TV, notice how it makes you feel as you read or watch it, and consider how much of it you wish to bring into your life.
8. Lead by example.
The more you can embody a state of love, acceptance, and embracing yourself and everyone around you without judgment, the more you will allow others to step more fully into their greatness while not bringing others down in the process. We are most influenced by the five people we spend the most time with and that is true for all of us. If you influence those around you to be more loving and accepting, they will then influence other people in their life that you don’t have exposure to. A ripple effect is created, and boom! the world becomes more loving all over!
Now it’s your turn. What helps you to stop comparing yourself to others? Leave a comment!
Casey McCluskey, acclaimed health and life coach, author, motivational speaker, and co-founder of the Get Juicy Cleanse (as seen on CBS and Vimergy.com), shows you how to get radiant health and energy, lose weight, and heal naturally so that you can live the life you want in a body you love. Casey has helped thousands of people across the world achieve radiant, long lasting physical and emotional wellness via her international private coaching, guided group programs, health education, motivational speaking, and Tonic Herb line at Vimergy.com.
Get energized and start loving your life today with her free 12 Steps To Optimal Health eCourse by clicking here.