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Comparison is the thief of Joy.
You’ve likely been told this, but have you actually applied the thought behind the mantra?
As a mother, I find myself continually sizing myself up to some invisible competition.
The Mom who is wealthy. Or the Stay-At-Home-Mom. Perhaps the mom that wasn’t 19 when she had her first child or the mom with the master’s degree or Ph.D. The established one.
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I find myself doing it with circumstances too. The woman my age who bought a house before me. The one with an already established retirement plan.
If only, I could be where she is. Doing what she is doing. If only.
Now’s the cue to let yourself Barf.
I’m going to get straight to my point.
A comparison is the thief of Joy. No matter the comparison, or the Joy. It will rob you of it, every time.
Take for example the person I was when I was married. I lived in an adorable three bedroom house with 2 acres of land. We had two newer vehicles. Both my spouse and I at the time had good paying jobs. Our children went to school, played sports. We even had a pool.
To an outsider looking in, we had it all. We were living the American dream.
You would have never known we were miserable. Inside our house lived strife, anger, and resentment. We were fighting and screaming. Avoiding each other.
My beautiful children were struggling in school. My oldest needed more help than I had time to give and because of the turmoil we were living in, I worried his self-doubt was a direct reflection of his environment.
It was toxic.
At the time, I compared my life to the happy stay at home moms I saw at PTO meetings. I weighed my circumstances against anyone I assumed to have it better.
Little did I realize there were others comparing their circumstances to mine. If I could have told them what they saw was only skin deep. They had no idea of our daily struggles, of our problems. They were wishing for something I was wishing myself out of.
After my marriage ended, I stopped comparing.-Lacy Estelle
If you want to be happy, ever in your life. Regardless of your circumstances do yourself a favor: Stop Comparing.
This One Thing Will Rob You Of Your Joy Every Time.
Think of it as a blind bet.
You live your life, and instead of finding things to be grateful for daily. You make a bet that someone else has it better. You make this bet, only learning about a quarter of what the person is going through much less living through.
What if you won that bet?
The bet that they have it better than you do.
You’d trade spots and likely, based on your perception of your circumstances you’d begin to see why it’s not so great after all.
All the energy you waste, comparing yourself or your circumstances to others is energy you could apply to find the good in your life.
Besides that, there are plenty of comparisons that your life or circumstances might win.
There are people, at all different stages of their life, wishing they were in yours.
So save yourself the unnecessary heartache and compare yourself to the only person who matters: The person you were last year, yesterday, and five minutes ago.
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Always improve on yourself, but only measure your success with your ruler. Not anyone else.
Don’t allow Comparison to be the thief of your Joy.
The grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
It’s greener where you water it.
Water your own grass, and your own flowers, and your own yard. And let everyone else worry about their private garden. Eventually, yours will grow too.
If you are looking for a way to measure and achieve your goals, check out my good friend Nadalie Bardo’s Goals Planner! You can find out exactly what type of goal you should set this year here (for free!): I want to Change My Life!