You ever heard of the comparison game? Well, it's where you constantly measure your "win" in life by comparing your life to the life of others. I believe I found the biggest confidence booster when I realized there is no competition. I get asked a lot where does my confidence come from and how did I get bold enough to speak up for myself and the things that I believed in. The key was realizing that I was made completely unique and a part of a whole picture. This means that my purpose is just as important as the next persons here on earth. We are all a part of a bigger picture and because of that, there is no need to envy or compare myself to the next person or their life. To compliment another or recognize their shine, does not diminish your shine. One of the biggest tricks or schemes to keep you engaged in the comparison game is social media. Not only are you surrounded by the pictures of others successes via Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, you can even go on Pinterest and save to a board the things you would want that others have. Now don't get me wrong I love, love, love Pinterest. It's full of so many great decor ideas, recipes, and fashion choices, but if used incorrectly or overused it can be a part of what's keeping you playing into the comparison game. Instead of feeling sad, inadequate, and jealous after seeing the successes of others you should feel inspired and excited that one day it'll be your time to shine in that certain area. We have a choice to either celebrate the accomplishments of others or be jealous of them. The latter destroys your self-esteem and doesn't get you any closer to your own success stories. Instead, compliment, celebrate, and congratulate others when they meet a certain goal, or obtain something you, yourself may have wanted.
Life is not a competition, everyone is running their own personal race. You may just be catching someone's race at one of the victory points, but that doesn't mean they never had to struggle before getting there and that they won't struggle right after that victory point. Instead of comparing, focus on the race and journey you are running right now. You are just as special as the next person. There's no one on this earth better or more important than the next. God saw fit to create each of us, therefore we are all equally worthy, whether you can see it or not. The worth of a person is not something visual to the eye, it is something that can't be measured by our senses, but by a knowing that if God put you here on this earth, you are valuable...Point, Blank, Period. So step away from the game and walk in knowing that you are your own competition.
"The only person you should be better than is the person you were yesterday."
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Have a great week and as always I will be praying for each and every one of you! - Love, Rissa
So after my last blog so many of the readers asked me add to the types of situations I've either heard of, experienced myself, or helped a friend in regards to settling when it comes to romantic relationships. And looking back they are so cliche and I am sure each reader can agree. If you have one to add, please email or comment and I can do a post on them as well. So let's talk...because I pretty much found these to be funny while writing them, but sad in the fact that they happen so often.
"Mrs. Hurt and Independent" and "Retired Ladies Man"
This is the Gabrielle Union portrayed character, strong, independent, but very much hurt, who meets the ladies man, who is finally actually ready to settle down. She will only give just enough to satisfy certain areas, but never truly lets him in. She doesn't need a man, and makes that clear, and he's so used to getting anything he wants, that this time he feels she's the one. Both hurt, but on two different ends of the spectrum. She will only allow someone so close to satisfy her needs whether just someone to talk to for the day or just someone to have occasional fun with, but does not offer commitment. She acts like nothing he really does bothers her, because he can quickly be replaced with work or life's busyness. He feels that she doesn't need him so why should he try so hard after so many failed attempts. He's hurt so many and she's been hurt by many, the typical plot in a movie. In the movies, they fall in love after some misunderstanding that leads the audience to believe it's over, and some how magically they end up back together. In reality, the life we live in, neither usually lets their pride go. They usually try to hide their baggage, not realizing no matter who they end up with they have to unpack the baggage one way or another. Notice the "Mrs." because in her mind, her heart is locked away and taken, by her past hurt.
"Pretty Woman" and "Mr. $uccessful"
She's everything that glitters on the outside, but on the inside you find no gold. He's handsome, successful, and rich, but in the inside is a little boy, trying to prove he is the MAN. They take beautiful pictures, yet are both so insecure on the inside. He's happy to look like a guy who has it all, so is she, but deep down, it's still not enough. Because there's no amount of money, makeup, praises, or material things that can truly give them the approval they really desire. And it usually stems from the disapproval or discouragement from family and friends growing up. They find themselves still trying to prove that they are enough, not even knowing that even back then, they were always enough. The world looks at their social media pages and envies them. They set trends and everyone wants to be around them, yet they are striving and striving to get, what they already have. The surface of their relationship is superficial and very shallow. Sooner or later the relationship ends due to the inability to resolve minor issues since it was never built on a solid foundation to begin with.
"Ms. Right" and "Mr. Not Right Now"
This is probably one of the most common situations I hear about and I have even found myself in a similar situation previously. You meet a guy and develop what seems to be a great friendship and the makings of a great relationship. The more time you spend together, the more you get to know one another, the more it may begin to feel as if this may be the relationship you've been waiting for. You are now to the point where you two have almost intertwined your lives so that a lot of your schedule includes the other person. As time goes on you can't help but wonder why the friendship has not moved forward to the next level. You are sure that you like this person and they have expressed that they feel the same about you. You try to give it time before asking so it won't seem like you're jumping the gun or being impatient. You may have previously had a conversation regarding the topic, but he's made the reference that he just wasn't ready for a relationship so you try to be patient. The reality is, the first time you hear that is when you have to fall back and stop giving this person a lot of your time and energy. Matter of fact, you may want to run.lol I know you may be thinking, "but he's a great guy and he has a lot of the qualities I would love to have in a mate." You may even feel that the more you prove to him how great of a woman you are he may finally make that move. The honest truth is a man that is not ready, is just as wrong for you as the guy who does not know what he wants. There is nothing you can do for a man who is not ready to be in a relationship. It is a personal choice when someone decides to be in a relationship. Regardless of the fears of all the possible things that could go wrong in a relationship, it is a personal choice to let those fears hold you back. You cannot push a man past his fears, only he can decide to do that. And honestly, who really wants to settle for someone they have to convince that they're worth fighting their fears for? The fear of being in a relationship in our generation is real, so I'm not discounting that it's not easy to be vulnerable and allow someone the opportunity to hurt you. What I am saying is, one day there will come a person who against all fears makes you feel as if it's worth it to give yourself up. What do I mean by giving yourself up? I mean giving up your fears, ego, and pride to engage in a relationship with this person. Ladies, if he isn't willing to do this, say goodbye. Don't try to hang on to the friendship either, because if he isn't wanting all of you, he shouldn't be able to receive any of the benefits of you without taking on any of the responsibility. You're worth someone saying they choose you, as you have done. If you have been bold enough to get over your fears to be with them, they should mutually do the same. If not, wish them the best, and say goodbye. Then, make the decision that to prevent this in the future you'll decide not to give too much of your time and energy on the front end. Instead you'll guard your heart just a little more. Because even your time and energy are a gift and privilege, so please do not squander it on someone who does not see you worth giving themselves up for.
Clarissa C. Burton, M.S.W
Devoted to guiding others toward living a life they don't need a vacation from.