[ By Terry Saw ]
The fact that you’ve landed on this says a lot about you wanting to take back your personal power and work towards living a more positive and meaningful life starting today – and guess what? Taking this first step is already the battle half won against this thing called ‘comparison mentality’ so many of us find ourselves entangled with at various points in our lives.
To help you along, here are some truly empowering ways to feel liberated from the shackles of self-doubt and the nagging feeling of never being ‘good enough’ because spoiler alert: YOU are enough.
As the saying goes, the grass is always greener on the other side – but is it really? Our perception of what could be and what really is are two very different stories. So, instead of longing for ‘greener pastures’ (which are probably not that green for all we know), why not focus our energy on watering our own turf instead?
Especially when comparison mentality have you feeling a little down and out, try setting aside 15 minutes for some quiet self-reflection. Put pen to paper while asking yourself reflective questions such as:
• What is the root cause to how you are feeling right now?
• Why are you feeling that way?
• Is it helpful?
• What can you do to disrupt or break out from this rumination?
RC Says: Remember, what we practice grows stronger – choose wisely if you want it to be negative self-talk or positive affirmations that you’re fanning and which one is truly helping you nurture personal growth.
Social Media vs Reality
One of the biggest culprits behind heightened anxiety, depression and other mental health issues in the world, social media has proven itself to be a double-edged sword when it comes to comparison. Newsflash: No one’s life is perpetually ‘perfect’ (regardless of how many picture-perfect holidays or shopping sprees people seem to have).
When you find yourself mindlessly scrolling through your social media feed and feeling that scarcity mentality brewing inside you, it is time to re-evaluate your relationship with Facebook, Instagram or other social platforms. Think about your objectives of using these sites and always check-in with yourself from time to time to see if you’ve gone off course.
RC Tip: Set aside a maximum time you’re comfortable with spending on social media each day and have the discipline to log off once you’ve hit your limit. Alternatively, removing social apps from your phone can curb the temptation. One of the suggestions from The Minimalists is to limit your usage to only when you’re on your laptop or desktop – you’ll be surprised how much extra time you end up having in a day for more positive and fulfilling activities!
Family (Digital Detox) Day
It is true that all habits (good or bad) start at home so, why not lead by example and start a healthy relationship with gadgets for the whole family by implementing a Digital Detox Day either each week or every fortnight at home.
If us as parents or adults are still finding that we have to navigate the effects of comparison mentality at this age, chances are, our tech-savvy children are also going through the same at a much younger age and need all the guidance they can get.
RC Suggests: Use Digital Detox Days for family-focused activities including spending time in nature, reconnecting over longer sit-down meals together and having fun as a family either through crafting, cooking or baking workshops.
Find Your Tribe
Part of comparison mentality stems from us trying to fit into social circles we may not necessarily belong to, or have outgrown in some way, vice versa, and that is truly okay.
As time passes and our lives change and grow over time, so do those of the people around us. If the company you keep no longer inspire, challenge or motivate you in the most positive ways, it may be time to do a little spring cleaning of your contacts in the name of a living a more positive and progressive life.
RC Spotlight: Motivational speaker Jim Rohn speaks about how “We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with” – so, start by thinking which five people bring the most joy and positivity into your life and spend more quality time with those who truly uplift you.
Start a Gratitude Journal
This effective yet sustainable practice only takes as little as five minutes out of your day – something as simple as writing down three things you are grateful for works wonders in training the mind to focus on the positive and find the good in your day.
With consistent practice, you’ll find yourself able to enjoy and appreciate the simpler pleasures in life a lot more than you would otherwise allow yourself to. Over time, a personal gratitude practice encourages you to find (and experience) more joy and contentment in what you do have, rather than what you don’t – or not necessarily even need!
RC Tip: Keep a journal or a notebook at the side of your bed for this practice – looking back at what you can be grateful for at the end of each day is a great form of self-reflection and a gentle winding down activity that helps clear your mind for a good night’s slumber.
Stay (and Excel!) In Your Lane
If someone seems to be ‘having it all’ in their lives (or at least on social media) – try to find it in yourself to be happy for them. Each and every one of us have strengths and qualities that are unique to us – so, instead of talking yourself down because you feel comparatively lesser or if you find yourself trying to be someone you’re not, take some time out to be reminded of what you excel in, how your strengths have gotten you thus far, and how you can continue to thrive, evolve and use them to your advantage.
Remember, there is a place for everyone in this world, so be mindful of spending your time and energy trying to fit into a space that is not necessarily cut out for you. As the saying goes, you are exactly where you are meant to be at this very moment. Trust the process and your journey – it’s all good.