A Year of Self-Love
August: Releasing Comparisons
The self-love journey is an ongoing commitment to nourishing the relationship we have with ourselves; the most important relationship we’ll ever have. It’s an unconditional acceptance of ourselves as we are now, the awareness that there’s nothing to fix and therefore we don’t need to be anything else or do anything else that is removed from who we really are.
This month we’re exploring self-love’s arch nemesis: comparison. We’ve all heard that comparison is the thief of joy, and by its very nature, it blocks us from true self-love in so many ways. Whichever route that comparison takes you down, it is likely that it will lead to the feeling that you’re always falling short, that you’re unworthy or less than other people. That other people are doing a better job at life than you are, so you scramble for ways to be like them. And this results in a lack of acceptance for you as you are now.
When you learn to release comparisons, you gain more self-acceptance, which helps you to finally embrace your uniqueness: what makes you, you. Your individuality is your greatest superpower, and the more you can step into who you authentically are, the better you will feel about your life. It also leads to a feeling of more gratitude, as you are able to focus on what you already have and where you are now, rather than what you don’t have. This focus on you as you are now also means you can live in the present moment more, which is always a more joyful place to live.
So, we know that constantly comparing ourselves isn’t optimal for self-love, but how exactly do we start to work on releasing the need to compare?
The first thing to do is to actually gain an awareness of your thoughts, and to notice when you sense yourself going into comparison mode. Can you catch yourself in the moment you start to compare and just note to yourself: ‘Here I am comparing again’?
Once you have an awareness of when this starts to happen, the comparisons no longer totally consume you. From there, maybe you can change the narrative. Instead of critically comparing, can you see other people as inspiration instead, and ask yourself what you can learn from them?
If there is nothing inspiring to learn or gain, especially from people you follow on social media, unfollow them. Don’t waste your energy on people who make you feel bad about yourself.
Can you turn comparison on its head, and rather than looking outwardly and celebrating other people all the time, can you write down and celebrate your own wins more regularly? There are always an abundance of things to love yourself for. Write them down and remind yourself of them often.
Spend some time getting to know your values and gain a better understanding of who you are, so you can be clear and comfortable that how you live your life is going to be different to everyone else and that is okay. More than okay, it is necessary. No one is you, and that is your greatest power.
Sabi Kerr is a yoga teacher and life coach. It’s her passion to support people in developing deep levels of self-love, so that they can move forwards and create their fullest lives (sabikerr.com)