Thursday, January 14, 2010

Comparing

I was listening to the radio the other day and heard this thought: "If you want to be miserable, keep comparing yourself with others". I started wondering why we do it--we make comparisons and most of the time it's apples to oranges. We usually compare our worst whatever, to someone else's best.

When I first started blogging, I was blogging for me. Then I got a few comments and visited a few blogs and loved what I read. I still love what I read, but quite often I read things that make me question if I'm good enough, smart enough, pretty enough, etc. I love the things that I do--I may not be the best singer, but I love to sing--but I'll never karaoke. I love to run--I'm usually at the end of the pack, but that's okay--I'm doing it for me. I'm not a great scriptorian, but I love learning to apply. I may not take the best photographs, but my pictures are my memories and I love them. I'm not the best cook, but I love making meals and goodies for people.

I'm not sure if this is going to make sense, or if I'm ever going to hit "publish post". I started thinking about why we compare and I thought about grades--particularly when that grading takes place on a curve. Do we look at life in that same way--are we in the top percentage or near the bottom. And if we are, top of what or bottom of what. In the U.S. the average household income is around $52,000. And what I have been able to find the worldwide personal income would be $7,000 (not household) But most of us think about those that have a whole lot more, not those who have a whole lot less. The commentator I heard on the radio suggested if we want to be miserable, compare ourselves to that TV talk show host who will be retiring in a couple of years.

A friend put a great quote on facebook today: "Our business in life is not to get ahead of others, but to get ahead of ourselves -- to break our own records, to outstrip our yesterday by our today."~ Stewart B. Johnson

Another quote I love is "Dance Like No One Is Watching". (I was not familiar with the rest of the quote: "Dance like no one is watching, love like you'll never be hurt, sing like no one is listening, live like it's heaven on earth." William Purkey. When I'm on the dance floor dancing, I know I'm not very good, but I have a great time. So why can't I go through life that same way--JUST ENJOY THE JOURNEY. I know who I am--I know I'm never alone. I have a fantastic man by my side and great family who loves and supports me.

ADDENDUM: As I sit and watch the news about Haiti, it is so heartbreaking. I am reminded how truly blessed we are and how much we have. I wonder how a people who are living in the poorest country in the western hemisphere can now survive with even less.



SIDENOTE #1: I keep checking on-line every day so I can find these mitts. So far, no luck, but I'll keep looking.

SIDENOTE #2: I changed the post date and time when I added the addendum--sorry if it was confusing.






22 comments:

Valerie said...

This is very nicely written! Why is it that we always compare ourselves to others? Why do we have to put ourselves on the same level as the neighbors down the street (or the next blog over). Have we lost the joy of just doing something we love because it might not be as good as someone else's?
This gives me something to think about and to ponder. Thank you, Yvonne!

Neal said...

Amen

linda said...

Very beautifully written and well said. Gives me great food for thought today, thank you.

Heffalump said...

You are a wise woman. Thanks for making me think!

Natalie said...

I love the way you write. Such great thoughts. How true they are. I am seriously going to ponder them.
I really want to meet you irl and spend some time together. You are an awesome and inspiring friend.
Hugs.

ShEiLa said...

I know what you are saying is so true. Comparison especially when downgrading oneself is no good at all.

I think how sad I get when one of my children is down in the dumps and doubts their abilities and value as a person and I am sure our Father in Heaven feels the same way about some of us adults.

So I will try not to compare myself to you and just admire your strengths and not beat myself up about my weaknesses.

ToOdLeS.

chellie said...

love this... what a perfect day to return to blog world... I needed to read this. I am always comparing myself to others and then feel bad about myself that I am "not good enough." I am glad I have simplified everything. Blog for me and some family and friends and now only read the blogs of those I love and know. :)

Klin said...

This is a fabulous post. This is one of the causes of depression and so detrimental to our self image.

We all need to read this a lot.

JustRandi said...

You're right, of course. We are so much happier when we don't compare ourselves to others. But it's so difficult not to.
That's one thing running has taught me. Just be your own best. (at least I can do it somewhere!)

The Garden of Egan said...

I loved your thoughts.
You are amazing.

Lt. Col. Samantha Carter said...

One of the best CES speakers ever once said that if we think someone else's life is perfect, and that ours pales in comparison, try spending 24 hours with them. When you're done, you'll be THANKFUL for your problems. Life is not an accountant's balance sheet of "She has this, and I don't have that." When we know who we are, where we come from, and why we're here there will be no need to compare.

Thanks for your beautiful writing and profound thoughts!

Tonya said...

Very well said my friend. I try to remind myself not to compare myself but it's a constant battle.

Carrot Jello said...

...and amen.
I'm pretty sure 99% of people feel this way at different times in their lives.
Methinks it the devil whispering in our ears.

Nancy Face said...

Excellent post! Comparing ourselves or our loved ones with others is never a good idea!

Someone who read Lauren's blog left her a mean comment about me. She compared me to other middle aged women who are actually mature and dignified (unlike myself, haha!) and she said my slang was completely inappropriate. She even accused Lauren of writing my posts for me. I went back and read my post, trying to think like a stranger would, and I thought, "Yep! I am totally ridiculous and completely foolish!" Then I grinned because I wasn't about to change a thing! I know very well how to speak and write properly. But it's a lot more fun not to! That's how I really talk around my family! :D

txmommy said...

i'll just add a little amen. I do the same thing, I think everyone does. I guess we just need to remember that what we see is someone's best, and we know our own worst. I try and be happy for others while working on myself and not getting discouraged! it's hard.
I often wonder why I didn't spend more time in the pre-exsistnace working up some talents for myself to bring down to earth with me :) But it is what it is....and i think you are awesome! you are one of the ones I compare myself to.

sweetpea said...

I sure needed to read this today. I'm not sure why we compare, although it certainly has been happening since the beginning of time.
One of my continuing goals is to feel secure enough in myself, to love myself exactly the way I am.

Oh, and yes Miss Yvonne, I certainly do remember who NC beat. :) I am already getting excited for March Madness!

Sheri said...

I think you are more than enough and you inspire me to do better! I do compare my self and I hate doing that cause I never come out feeling any better! Probably because I would never compare myself to someone I thought I was doing better than - how rude would that be?!
I really am trying to do a better job of enjoying the journey!!

Heidi said...

Great words mom!!! You have such wisdom and I love how you love to share what you learn and what you think about. I love that you love to do things for you! I need to do better about that cuz I DEFINITELY compare A LOT as you already know;p I love ya!!!

Doran & Jody said...

Nice post. I, along with many others I am sure, find myself doing the same thing. However, lately I remind myself that my kids want to read this and my in-laws want to see what we are up to. We only get to see them once maybe twice a year. Then I hit post.

I have the "everyone has a nicer home than me" attitude I need to get over. We just painted and added a few touches to our kitchen over the holidays and I still haven't posted them. Partially because I have been too lazy, another is because I live in a cracker box. But it will be done soon.

Just think...if someone doesn't like what and who we are they won't come to our blogs and that is ok. Because our family WILL!! We do this for us and them.

Happy posting!!

mindyluwho said...

Great post Yvonne. I am guilty of the sin of comparing. I lost about 5 years of my life because of it, wallowing in self-pity before coming to know that I am worth as much as the next guy, but in my own way. Still it's hard--definitely a work in progress, but I'm learning how to appreciate others for what they can do and still think positively about myself and my talents.

Melissa said...

I also compare myself with... well, with just about everyone on the planet. And you're right... I take their best attributes, compare them with my worst and - WAHLAH! Squished frog syndrome ;) It's something I'm working on... and probably will be for awhile :)

Jess said...

I totally agree with all of your wonderfully written words. I totally don't understand why we do it but like you I am working at changing it in myself. Good luck.