Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Women/Beauty And The Comparison Trap

Comparing to others. 

Have you ever compared yourself to someone else? 

Most everyone has at some point. 

But we know that comparison is a fruitless endeavor of the human mind. 

God made each and every one of us unique and once we realize this truth, that we can thrive using the gifts He has bestowed upon us we will find much more happiness within. 

It's when we begin to look around and compare ourselves to the Joneses, to our friends, to our co-workers, to our siblings, to our neighbors, etc... the problems begin. 

What if you knew two people who were successful, honest and kind... 

One had sailed through life building his now successful business from the ground up with relatively little to no problems. He didn't struggle financially, he didn't endure any loss or deaths, he had thrived with good health both physical and mental, his wife and children were the picture of happiness and health etc. 

Then you see your other friend who has struggled to create her own company... who maybe lost her parents young, perhaps she was raised by an abusive extended family member, she experienced huge difficulty with learning as a child, she endured quite a bit of depression... yet through much hard work and perseverance and faith in God... she pushed forward and is now incredibly successful. Her route was much more difficult than the first friend. 

Although you certainly see the hard work both friend's have dedicated to their careers... part of you just can't help but perhaps admire your friend a little more who went through the trials and tribulations to get where she is, but you also know one friend is not less than or greater. Certainly your friend who has struggled should not feel less than due to experiencing more adversity.  

We are each given our own God-given unique set of talents, gifts and abilities to use during our time on earth. When we embrace them and acknowledge our trials that have been temporary roadblocks but yet we have powered forward with faith in God.... that is the ultimate success in life! 

We all have things we may not care for about ourselves. Maybe we wish we were born with curly hair, blonde hair, we were skinnier, we were taller, etc. When we begin to listen to those internal voices that offer no positivity and try to compare us to other's we know we need to address that. 

When I was in kindergarten, one of my friends had the longest prettiest blonde hair. It looked like buttery strands of silk... I was so jealous I went home crying because I was brunette. I cried to my mother about how I hated having brown hair. For years I've embraced my brunette hair and I'm thankful for it, knowing it fits me. God has given each of you a beautiful head of hair, features, personality, and spirit. Each of us are unique in our own special ways. 

In middle school I hated having glasses and was teased mercilessly over something I had zero control over. My prescription was so extreme, my lenses so thick they looked like bottle caps. I felt hidden under all that plastic and taking those off for the first time and wearing contacts was the most liberating feeling in the world. It felt like the end of the world at the time but I got through it and now that period of time feels like a tiny blip in the grand scheme of things. 

As a young adult in my early twenties I struggled with wanting to be taller, wanting smaller boobs and a smaller nose. It took some time to see the beauty in what God gave me. For many girls and women this is a similar struggle. Even though we all may have those days we begin to doubt.... we can firmly tell ourselves "No. I am.... (insert your awesomeness here) and thank you God!" If you are struggling and grappling with your height, weight, hair, jeans size, etc.... you can remind yourself; assert yourself in knowing that you are beautiful! 

Just like when we are happy with our talents, our beauty, our personality, etc... we will be happiest when we are content with being ourselves. Your beauty is not just rooted in your eyes, lips, hair, age, size or figure. It's rooted in being YOU...  people are attracted to those who are themselves and don't try to be something they aren't. When we embrace our spirit, our wit, our laugh, humor, generosity, God-given talents, warmth, goodness... etc, we will no longer succumb to the traps of comparison but instead thrive in confidence! 

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