The Focus On You

Self-Care Is A Lifestyle

Category: Inspiration (page 2 of 26)

How To Bust Out Of The Comparison Trap

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It seems like whether we’re thriving or holding on for dear life, we seem to peek our heads to see how everyone else is surviving. Social media makes these “comparison traps” even harder because people love to show off.

The beginning of the year is the season of self-doubt. When people are already counting “wins” we may be ready to kiss our goals goodbye (again).

What are the reasons we get stuck in comparison traps?

  • We question if what we’re doing is “right.”
  • We want to be accepted even when we don’t accept ourselves.
  • It gives us an excuse to quit.
  • We no longer recognize our own “wins” because all we focus on are “losses.”
  • We haven’t secured a mentor, trainer or guide to keep us focused on our path.
  • It can become lonely when we’re working long hours on our dreams. Comparison breaks up the loneliness.
  • Our dreams/visions/goals aren’t full-fledged commitments.
  • Our squad isn’t supportive or on a similar path.

When I see entrepreneur friends who are killing it in their dreams and goals, I realize that they’re putting in ten times more work than me. I don’t look at that as a personal weakness. I see it as a challenge. If I can’t applaud a friend or colleague on their success because I feel it reflects poorly on me, then I got work to do. Reminder: No one is considering MY goals when they’re achieving THEIR goals. That form of competition doesn’t breed success.

A cognitive trick I talk about in mental health therapy is teaching people to recognize their personal mirrors. We “project”, or throw, our thoughts and worries onto other people because our flaw is ALL we can think about. We assume that’s all they see too.

For example, if I look in the mirror and see someone who isn’t smart, I will assume everyone sees the same thing. I will react to people as if they’re treating me like an idiot. I will assume that every rejection and unanswered text is because people think I’m not smart. When we build up the confidence to work for a promotion, begin a weight loss program or start dating it’s easier to give up if our personal mirror isn’t rooted in love.

I can’t imagine there’s a person on Earth who thinks they’re flawless everyday but are you going to focus on the flaws or the strengths? Point out your strengths daily. Hourly.

Are you focused on your mediocre resume or your badass network of references?

Are the thicker thighs a problem or a benefit during weight training?

Were you hired to have voluminous hair or for your ability to work well with customers/clients?

Did any of these sentences make you feel like you need a boost? This is where coaches, mentors, spiritual guides and therapists fit in. They’ll remind you of your strengths until you learn to do it yourself.

I recently read that likeability is like a prison. Is our desire to be liked something we carried over from adolescence? (I see an upcoming blog  post on this subject…) Accepting who we are places a neutral label on what we see in the mirror. It’s not good or bad. It just is. It’s easier to be loving towards myself if I’m centered in the middle, in neutral, rather than at the other extreme of “negative.”

Bust out of comparison traps by reminding yourself how remarkable you are, how realistic and within reach your goals are and give yourself credit for making it through the day. Find people who believe in your goals and will only lift you up. Accept more than what you see in the mirror. Click To Tweet Point out the wins from last week, last year and the wins that made you feel alive when you were a kid.

The only person you should be comparing yourself to is you. That’s all you can control and you can only go HIGHER from here!

Book Recommendation: You Are Enough: How To Elevate Your Thoughts, Align Your Energy and Get Out Of The Comparison Trap by Cassie Mendoza-Jones





How To Maintain Your New Year Energy

The end of 2017 was flooded with messages of renewed energy and healthy intentions for a better year. I admit it was a welcomed surprise, especially when social media can be so whiny and depressing. But I know I’m not alone in thinking that this motivation can’t last forever. When I work with therapy clients, as we celebrate any uptick in motivation, I always invite them to examine their recipes for success.

If our successes are so few, or only occur with “New Year” motivation, let’s look at how to spread this healthy energy throughout the year.

Assess Your Confidence

Do you realize how you confident you are? Yes you!

A person is unlikely to set goals or state their desires without having at least bite size confidence. If you got off the struggle bus in December and are left with bite size confidence, even the smallest resolution or goal involves confidence. Being willing to make a change in your life means you believe in your worth. Click To Tweet You believe you deserve better and can DO better.

That confidence translates into energy. All this social media energy about intentions, better boundaries, healthier eating, etc, comes from your self-worth.

Tip: At the end of every month, do a self-check on your confidence levels. Are your self-esteem and energy at the same level? What did you do at the end of December that could help you now?

Read: Are You A Confidence Buster?

Assess Your Barriers

In recovery circles, we caution people about the concept of insanity. “Insanity means doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results.” If your yearly goals fall apart at the same time each year, it’s time to check out your patterns.

If weight loss motivation is strong in the winter and gets weak in the summer, find the barrier.

If you only get motivated in your side hustle when your funds are low, find the barrier.

If your personal boundary wall is only strong when you’re feeling cocky or rude, remember that the wall won’t stay up forever. What’s your barrier?

In 2017 I slipped on a lot of my goals and lost motivation due to multiple distractions. I’ll admit that social media scrolling and stressing (thanks to this government) had me distracted. I didn’t have the awareness to pull away and I lost motivation to finish personal and professional tasks. I realized this mid-year and made better efforts to stop being so opinionated.

In the blogging world, we aim to engage online with others, which helps build our brand. Having opinions doesn’t fatten my pocket. I now have to find the healthy line between being informed and just wasting time.

Assess Your Why

When clients mention trying something different I always ask them, “Why?” Sometimes it sounds like I’m being a jerk but it’s a healthy way of challenging their thinking. Where did they get this idea? Who is encouraging them to do it? Is it in line with their values?

If we don’t know our WHY, then we’re likely to stumble.

If you are feeling energized about your goals, vision board, business planning, write down WHY. Re-visit this WHY when you’re feeling discouraged or you get off track.

As a college graduate, I feel that one of my biggest lessons was patience. Now, this doesn’t mean I’m patient in traffic or waiting in line (that’s a whole other blog post). College students highlight those articles, chug coffee, stay up late and type up endless pages of reports because they’re patient. They know that every hurdle leads to a degree.  For me, my degree meant a higher ceiling. I knew that my degree would open more doors and lead to my desired career.

Every tedious task led to my WHY.

When I started my blog exactly 3 years ago, I took my time in writing posts and monetizing. My long-term goal with blogging is to improve my writing and eventually write books. All the tedious work that comes along with blogging is part of my WHY.

As a new year begins, celebrate your confidence, remind yourself of what you truly value and expect a few bumps in the road. With struggle comes growth. After breakdowns, come breakthroughs. Click To Tweet.

Goals aren’t set in stone. Pivot and adjust as changes occur. Go easy on yourself and remember that being too task-oriented can be draining. Align your WHY with WHO you want to be and you’ll be on the right track! I’m cheering you on!


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