I have to be honest… I recently hit a heavy writer’s block. Overwhelmed by doubt and self-inflicted sorrow, I had to ask myself, “Girl, what’s wrong with you?” I couldn’t quite put my finger on the cause of my self-pity until I had my quiet-time with God this morning. He assured me that I wasn’t spiraling into a deep depression and that my world would not be coming to an end, but that I was feeling the effects of a powerful drug called, comparison.
It only takes a little bit to get you high, but the side effects are long lasting; trust me. You’ll begin to feel down for no apparent reason, moodiness will occur, and the chills of withdrawal will have you running back to the warmth of your Instagram feed, checking up on God knows who, just to get your next hit. But I’m here to let you know that it’s time to put the pipe down.
For a moment, I felt like this summer was getting away from me. My faith had me expecting not to still be at my current job, because these long overnight hours have left me with little energy throughout the day to create posts. But somehow, I’ve made time to check up on my old classmates to see what they’re up to and read blog post on how this person received this opportunity and whatnot. Imagine trying to remain focused on your own journey while you’re watching someone else’s unfold almost perfectly… yeah, let’s just say those thoughts got a bit out of hand, so I’m grateful that God snatched me up for that.
What makes comparison dangerous is that it’s so easy to fall into, yet it only bares fruits of jealously and pure negativity. One moment you’ll be casually strolling down your Instagram feed, the next, you’ll see so-and-so posting about an internship they got in New York, then you’ll go to their page and see who they’ve been taking pictures with; which will lead you to someone else’s page, and 2 hours later you would have worked yourself into a tizzy, asking how you got there. Don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about. *insert emoji eyes*
But trust and believe, if I’m writing about it, I’m living it too! So, it’s only right that I share some tips on how to overcome your addiction because honey, it’s time to be set free.
1.) Don’t hate, congratulate. This is the first piece of advice, because let’s face it; it’s the hardest to do. When we see someone who has achieved something, it’s so easy to think, dang, why hasn’t something like that happened for me? You’ve been faithful in your current position… you’ve been praying and believing, but still nothing has come up. Well here’s a little exercise for you: the next time you hear someone’s good news, congratulate them. Don’t think about it, just do it; and as you continue to practice this, it will become easier for you to do. You see, it’s so easy for us to look over someone who’s in a dark/low place, but as soon as they glo-up, we can’t find it in us to rejoice in their success. Romans 12:15 tells us very simply to, “Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.” There must be a balance. And just think, if you’ve actively participated in someone’s struggle, it will be 10x easier to share in their success, because you’ve witnessed their trials.
2.) Put. The. Phone. Down. Has it ever occurred to you that the source of all of this is sitting right in your hand… literally. We are in a strange time where we are able to see someone else’s life unfold as it happens, minute by minute, day by day. Whether it’s a status update or an uploaded photo, we have a first row seat to a biopic that we may or may not have wanted to see. Keep in mind that people are only going to post they best parts of their life, but, if you are in a place where going down your timeline is going to lead you down a mental dejection… close the app, sign off if you have to, and Put. The. Phone. Down.
3.) FOCUS ON YOU, Boo. This is scripture! Galatians 6:4 puts it very plain saying, “Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else.” When you know you are working hard on yourself, for yourself; you won’t need to compare yourself to others. And if we’re being completely honest, the only ideal that we should be comparing ourselves to is that of Jesus Christ who is the ONLY standard. When He is our standard, we can then understand how we still fall short, but we can work harder each day to be more like Him, not man. So what are your main focuses? Say it with me, “MYSELF & GOD.” Good, you’ve got it!
4.) Don’t compare your Chapter 2, to someone else’s Chapter 15. Because you don’t know where these people have come from. You could just be starting on your walk with Christ and your watching Lauren who has been in the game for 6+ years now. Or you could be reading up on the results of James’ 10 years of blood, sweat and tears. We never know what someone has been through to get to where they are today, that has you stressing over them. For all you know, they could have been in the same spot as you, feeling the same way you do at this very moment. What, you think people just wake up successful? Nah, it don’t work like that. Be mindful of who’s walk you’re paying attention to, and instead of looking at them in comparison, use their journey as a source of inspiration.
As always, I hope that this has blessed someone. Writing this out has really helped me to get my mind right, but as I mentioned, it takes practice. If you can relate to this, be sure to comment and let me know! I’d love to hear from you all. Stay focused on you, and God… you’re time is coming. 🙂
You’ve just been served.