I’ve always been something of an introvert; I enjoy spending time doing my own thing and tend to feel nervous in big social gatherings. But when I first moved to America in 2011, I told myself that I would become more outgoing, accept more invitations and feel more confident being me.
If only the power of thought was enough.
As it turns out, I felt even more like a fish out of water. Stripped from the ease of living in Australia — where I understood the culture, the landscape, the ebb and flow of daily life — I found myself struggling to fit in, much less be my most gregarious self.
My feelings of being disconnected came primarily from my negative self-talk. “You’re not as interesting, not as pretty, you’re not as smart,” my inner critic would tell me. The energy that should have gone toward building new relationships was focused inward, comparing myself to others and wondering what they thought of me.
The more I played this game of comparisonitis the less beautiful I felt. After all, knowing yourself and being comfortable in your own skin is far more attractive (to yourself and others) than any external physical feature. I call this rejoicing in the beauty of you.
We women are constantly bombarded with media images that make us feel uneasy in our own skin. We compare ourselves to magazine models, celebrities or social media influencers, as well as friends, women you see on the street or even past versions of yourself.
But the more we play this game of comparisontis the less content we feel about who WE are and how WE live.
- Doing this fuels the fire of self-doubt and reinforces negative thoughts.
- It keeps you small and prevents you from ever truly falling in love with your body and life. Morbid reminder: you only get one of each.
- And it (de)values women according to their physical appearance. Men do this to us enough, why the heck are we doing to ourselves too?
This is why it’s so important that we rejoice in the beauty of being ourselves — our unique, vibrant, individual selves. It’s why I always encourage you to love the skin you’re in and put your mark on the world in a way that is meaningful, valuable and truly authentic.
Since 2011, I’ve been able to let go of the worry and comparisons (most of the time, anyway) and live as the woman who I was meant to be. Here are ten lifestyle philosophies that helped me do that:
- Live with compassion for yourself and others
- Be intentional about how you spend your time
- Achieve something every day that makes you feel proud
- Know YOUR purpose…it doesn’t have to be exotic, it just has to be real
- Do more of what lights you up and less of what brings you down
- Don’t spend quite so much time alone — human connection matters
- Get offline as much as possible, the world is what’s happening around you
- Highlight your unique differences as it’s those that make you great
- Live in the now and appreciate who you are today
- Spend time and energy creating things that you can share with the world. Spend less time absorbing unnecessary media. This is how you become the curator of your own life’s album
Now I’d Love To Hear From You
What did you think about today’s topic? If you find yourself feeling deflated after spending too much time on social media, or comparing yourself to other people on a regular basis, what do you do about it? Which of these 10 suggestions, if any, feels like an area that you need to address? Let me know by leaving a comment below.