The Trap Of Comparison and 6 Ways To Avoid It
Oh comparison, what an easy trap you are to fall into.
The Trap Of Comparison
Something as simple as scrolling through Instagram can lead to comparison, wishing we had her hair. Wishing we could travel as much as she does. Wishing our life was as put together as hers is.
This morning, I was at a women’s event at my church and one of my good friends walked in. She had an adorable outfit on, with a dark colored lipstick pulling it all together.
She looked so stylish.
And me, in my flannel shirt, leggings, and boots turned to the women I was talking to and said, “I wish I could dress like that, but I just can’t pull it off.”
What she said next was so simple, yet encouraging, “You don’t need to dress like her, just be yourself!”
This was literally such a simple statement. And honestly, an incredibly common one. But, most of the time it falls on deaf ears.
Because you can tell me just to “be me” but I still wish I was less awkward. And I still wish I dressed more stylish. I still wish my life was more put together.
Comparing yourself to someone else will almost always lead to disappointment in yourself or lust for what someone else has, but never joy.
It leads you to believe that you aren’t good enough, or that you would be happy if……
But God created you this way. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. God makes no mistakes. He has a plan for your life.
And in that, we should rest and find joy. You are corky and beautiful and kind and if you’re like me, maybe even a little awkward and your life might be a little messy. And THAT’S OKAY.
God isn’t scared of messy and he certainly isn’t scared of awkward. I believe he made each of us individually, knowing every hair on our heads and every corky personality trait we would have.
Don’t Let Comparison Steal Your Joy
Here are a few simple ways to break the habit of constantly comparing yourself to others.
1. Find Your Joy In The Lord
This sounds simple. But open up God’s word and read it. Read it and let it be a reminder of how much the Creator of the universe loves you. And how he doesn’t love you because you look a certain way or that you can do 30 pushups without stopping or because your life seems put together. He simply loves you, unconditionally and fiercely.
2. Be Thankful
Sometimes the trap of comparison is easiest to fall into when things in our lives seem to be going wrong. I know for me, when I’m struggling and nothing is going right I begin to compare myself to others. Asking myself why their life seems so perfect and why I just can’t seem to pull it together. So, spend some time every day writing about the things you are thankful for. Even in the hardest of situations, you can find something to be thankful for if you just keep your eyes open and look for the places God is working in your life.
3. Take a Break From Social Media
I do this from time to time. When I find myself constantly scrolling through social media wishing this or that about my life or myself, I simply take a break from it. A social media fast. It can be helpful to stop focusing on what others are doing and just live your own life. Social media can be a wonderful thing, but it can also be one of the quickest ways to let comparison steal your joy.
4. Remember Who You Are In Christ
As a Christian, your identity is in Christ. It’s not in the shoes you wear. It’s not in the number of followers you have on Instagram, or the number of countries you have visited. Don’t let the enemy trick you into thinking you need to find your identity in looking a certain way or being more like her. Colossians 3:1-3 is a good reminder of this, “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not earthly things. For you died, and now your life is hidden with Christ in God.”
5. Change Your Mindset
Pray that God would give you eyes to see yourself and your life the way he sees you. Because a lot of the time when we look at our own lives we just see all of the negatives, and in doing that we miss out on the good stuff. But God sees us differently. He sees us as his children. Beloved. Chosen. Forgiven. And that’s a lot of the time, not how we see ourselves, which quickly leads to feeling like we need to be more like someone else.
6. Be Content
Finding contentment can be hard. Especially when you feel like you’re doing the same thing day after day, or if you are in a tough season of life. But rest in the fact that God is in control, he put you where you are for a reason. If you feel like you’re in a season of waiting while everyone else seems to be moving doing different things, be encouraged that God doesn’t let anything go to waste. You are in this current season of life for a reason, you may never know exactly why, but God is for you and knows what he is doing.