Hey there! I hope you all are having a great week. Our posts this week are about not comparing yourself to others and I think this is ON TIME! This is something that we all have struggled with at one point or another. For me, it's extremely easy to do because you're consistently checking your progress, whether it be for a grad school milestone, from your advisor, in classes, or talking to other students, it's everywhere and hard to combat. Here are some reasons why you shouldn't do this and also a few tips on how to stop it.
1. Your journey is not someone's journey.
This is so important. Life deals everyone a different deck of cards so the rules of the game you're playing are guaranteed to be different than the rules of someone else's. Since you and the person next to you are on separate journeys, you can't possibly measure your own progress by someone else's metrics. You have to worry about what's in your own hand, first and foremost.
2. Comparison is the thief of joy.
Yes, this is a saying you've probably heard before, but it's true. You can't be happy if you're always thinking, "Well, Susan did this" or" Mike is better at this than me". THAT IS UNACCEPTABLE! You have to celebrate your OWN victories, no matter how small you think someone thinks they are. If it's a big deal to you, it's a big deal. Stand in your own light and stand proudly.
3. You're only making yourself feel bad.
When you sit there and worry about Susan and Mike, what's really happening? Nothing but you being upset. They have no idea your feelings are hurt. You making these comparisons is tapping into those insecurities you have about your personal, professional, or academic life and is making them worse. Nothing positive comes out of doing this. Trust me.
Now here are some tips to combat these urges.
1. Shut down your negative inner voice.
Now I know this is HARD, but we all have to start somewhere. That negative voice in your head is the cause for a lot of those comparisons you make. When you hear that little negative voice starting to talk, you have to SHUT IT DOWN! You have to come up with one positive for every negative thing it says and focus on that. If it helps, write down one thing you like about yourself every day. Honestly, that helped me a ton. I kept them on my phone so I always had access to them if I ever needed a pick me up.
2. Celebrate every accomplishment
No matter how big or how small, celebrate everything! Be your own hype woman! You have to build self-confidence so that you don't even think to compare yourself. No victory is too small and you have to STOP thinking that. Whether you get an A on an exam you've been studying for or just get out of bed after a depressive episode, CELEBRATE!
3. Remember YOU ARE PERFECT!
If you don't take anything else from this post, please remember that you are PERFECT the way you are. It all starts with HOW you think about yourself. Once you start believing all the positives, the negatives don't hold as much weight. You are special and wholeheartedly understanding that is half the battle.
One last thing before I go, "A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it, it just blooms."
See you next week!
- The Chemist