Do you have a sibling?
I do; an older sister. She is amazing and I love her to bits. I’m not sure if this happened in your house but in our house, we got compared a lot when family visited. Tinu (my sister), was skinnier than I was, Tinu got better grades than I did, Tinu spoke more to family than I did. I ate more than Tinu, I was grumpier than Tinu, and I argued back more than Tinu.
The culture that we live in, is a culture of comparison. We always run a risk of measuring something and holding it up against someone else – we might measure success, financial situation or the relationship with God. I don’t know about you, but I’ve fallen into the comparison trap on all of those listed above and then some.
Psychology has a lot to say about comparison. For one thing, they all agree that comparison is human nature, we are bound to compare and have been doing for a long time. Since the rise of social media and internet, a lot of people are falling for the trap more and more. According to research, people who compare find themselves experiencing negative feelings of dissatisfaction and Theodore Roosevelt said comparison is a ‘thief of joy’.
We are going to get moments in life where we start comparing. I remember when I first started my new job. A few days into my job, I was already comparing my skill set to people who had worked there for years. It’s moments when I reflect and start to notice that I am doing it and I start to remind my soul this verse:
Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else. For we are each responsible for our own conduct. – Galations 6:4-5 NLT
Friend, ask yourself – what are you comparing? Are you comparing physical appearances, pay slips or just someone else’s life? My unique sister in Christ, let this truth sink in to you: you are fearfully and wonderfully made; God’s workmanship. You are altogether beautiful my darling, there is no flaw in you. There is no one else on this earth like you. Like you, this race that you are running is unique to you, designed for you. The gifts God has given you will play to your strength in the race that you are running. You are so loved by God and the blessings He showers on you is far more rewarding than any pay checks we get.
A few things helps me when I start to compare – I make sure that I am intentionally grateful. Soon after I realised that I started to compare my skill set with others, I started thanking God for the skill set I do have right now that got me the job, the environment that I can grow and learn more, for the people who are around me who teach me.
When I start to compare physical looks, I start by intentionally thanking God with the work He has put into me and I compliment the person who I was comparing myself against. Something about giving a compliment, it gets you out of your own head trying to measure up to the person and you appreciate them. As a bonus, you brighten up their day. I met this girl one day who has the coolest pixie cut I’ve ever seen. Now, a pixie cut, although I’d love one would make me look like a 12-year-old boy so I’ve always avoided it. But when I noticed that I started to internally compare, I told her that I loved her hair. In that moment, my mind shut up and I didn’t continue trying to measure up to how cool she looked but appreciated it and be comfortable that I look cool too – but long hair cool.
Friend, I am so ready for us girls to stop the comparison game that can drift us apart but start complimenting and encouraging the unique beauty we all have been born it. I am so ready for us to honour the physical appearance that God gave us and run our own race without looking to the left or right and start comparing if they are behind or ahead of us. I am so ready for us to cheer each other on and have a community of women who can celebrate differences and appreciate when comparison rears its ugly head. The question is, are you ready for that too?
Let us know how we can pray for you while you start this journey of arming yourself against this comparison trap!
PS, hey girlfriend! Did you know that we have a FREE Exhale sessions? It’s your chance to jump on video with us and we can come alongside you and journey with you in whatever season you are in. Click this link to book your free session now - wearechai.as.me/exhalesessions