Letting Go of Comparison and Choosing Contentment

Ever have a moment like this…

You’re feeling pretty good about life, your job, your relationship but after vegging out on social media, you’re feeling like your whole life is “less than”.

Perhaps you lament that you don’t have your friend’s perfectly manicured, professionally taken photographs of her happily-ever-after family?.

Or look at that Pinterest worthy kitchen complete with quartz countertops and pearly white cabinets when you’re just struggling to make rent, much less afford the down payment on a house.

Then your boss calls you to her office and explains that you didn’t get the promotion you’ve been working towards.

Whether on social media or simply hearing about someone else’s success, it’s easy to compare and begin wondering why your’s isn’t so happy, so magical, so easy.

But chances are, that life/relationship/job you are comparing yours too isn’t exactly perfect.

Consciously, we know comparison doesn’t build our self-esteem, yet, we still fall into the trap of subconsciously comparing ourselves, our relationships, our jobs, and our lives with those around us.

So what can you do when you realize
you are veering closer to comparison versus contentment?
1. Become aware of and avoid your triggers: If that’s social media, then take a digital diet, unplug completely, or un-follow friends who primarily post ‘perfect’ photos instead of real life ‘messy’ photos. If it’s specific friends that aren’t authentic in talking about their struggles, then it’s okay to build new friendships with safe, vulnerable, honest people.
2. Be okay with imperfection: No one is perfect at everything. Value your own work effort, your good intentions, and allow yourself grace.
3. Focus on “I have enough” instead of “I need more”: If you are constantly striving for a bigger house, designer clothes, and a perfect spouse, then the attempt for more, more, more leads to dissatisfaction, stress, and discontentment.
4. Write and keep a gratitude list: The simple act of putting pen to paper reinforces to our soul the bounty of we’ve been blessed with. Simply writing down 3 things every day that you are grateful for helps with anxiety, depression, and grief.
5. Focus on your strengths instead of weaknesses to build self-esteem
6. Don’t set unrealistic expectations:  We all have different gifts. Some people can whip up a gourmet meal in ten minutes and for others, you’re just grateful you didn’t burn dinner again tonight. Beating yourself up for something that isn’t your greatest strength doesn’t help anyone. When you have realistic expectations of the gifts you’ve been given, you set yourself up for contentment.
7. Find safe people in your life who encourage you and appreciate you for youEach person is unique –
Focus on what you do WELL!

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