I recently read a famous author’s article and thought, “I could write a better story than this.” It’s embarrassing to admit. My words were spoken through a heart of jealousy.
Comparison, like a teeter-totter, lifted me higher than she was – for a moment. I felt good. I felt high. I felt powerful. And then, as fast as I went up, I came crashing down.
As I began my descent, a little voice asked, “If you are so good, why aren’t you like her? How come you aren’t doing what she is doing? Why bother Kelly? You don’t measure up. Quit.” Slam.
The impact of comparing can be shocking. It often leaves us discouraged as we fall to the ground, feeling disappointed in who we are. Up and down the teeter-totter goes – feel good, feel bad, feel high, feel low. What goes up must come down.
So, how do we gain lasting steady confidence? How do we beat the up-and-down rhythm of comparing? How do we deal with ourselves when we feel less than? It is time you found out how to stop comparing.
HOW TO STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS – 3 TIPS:
1. Anticipate the Lure of Comparing & Preemptively Fight
Thoughts of comparison are like a fly, they often land on us before we realize – and are gone before we can take action. What are we to do? We need to fight the lure in advance – before it even lands. We do this by examining our areas of vulnerability.
Where do I feel less than?
Where do I feel prideful?
What do I feel I am lacking?
How have I failed?
What areas of my life do I normally fall prey to “comparing”?
What are are my greatest dreams? Hopes?
How can I pray for those who are doing better than me?
How can I encourage those who are doing better and less than me?
What can I be thankful for?
“Let us examine our ways and test them,
and let us return to the LORD.” (Lamentations 3:40 NIV).
We are wise to open the door to our vulnerabilities and to welcome thankfulness in our lives. When equipped this way, we can more easily shut (and lock) the door to the temptation of comparing.
2. Bless & Decompress.
One of the greatest things we can do to combat comparing is to pray.
When we pray, we find a better way. When we:
Pray for our weaknesses, we find strength.
For our failures, we find hope.
For our dreams, we find new doors.
For our pride, we find authenticity.
For those in need, we find love.
For those more successful, we find a softened heart.
For those less than, we find charity.
For eyes to see like Christ, we find faith, hope and love.
We pray and God answers us with eternal rewards – lasting, meaningful and transformational rewards. Prayer changes us. Rather than looking for how much value we get, we start to see how much value we can give.
Instead of seeing our size compared to man, God shows us our size compared to Him.
He can – and will – bless many.
He is not an either/or kind of God. So, we can stop comparing, pray big and dream big for others!
If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! (Matthew 7:11 NIV)
We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother. (1 John 4:19-21)
3. See Yourself as God Sees You.
“Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.” 1 Sam. 16:7
To think that we will ever be without weakness, without hardships, without areas that need improvement, is not reality. God created each of us with both strengths and weaknesses. And, although the world tells us that we need to shape up or ship out, God just wants us to rely on Him in the midst of pain. He wants us to look at ourselves created in his image.
We are wise to embrace who we are in Christ (click to learn more),
to believe his truths and let them sink into the depths of our souls.
He created you uniquely and he loves you uniquely. He wants you to rely on Him. To trust Him. To draw near to Him.
He knows what he is doing. Posture your heart towards him and trust him to manage the rest. You are a work in progress – and he won’t finish until his masterpiece is finished.
Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on
to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. (Phil 1:6)
***BONUS TIP: Embrace Grace
No one is perfect – not one. Jesus didn’t die for us to be perfect; he died to extend us grace. We are growing more and more into the likeness of Christ, but it is a process. God has you covered – with the blood of Christ. Rest your deficiencies in the arms of Christ. He desires to hold your pain and work them to accomplish his goal in the most exciting exhilarating ways.
Now that you know how to stop comparing, trust him and let go of the up and down ride of comparing that only serves to leave you wind blown and frustrated.
Now that you have learned how to stop comparing, be sure you don’t miss Part I (The Shocking Truth about Comparing) & Part II (3 Ways Comparing is Bad) of the Comparing Series.
15 CommentsLeave a comment
“My words were spoken through a heart of jealousy.” How this destroys us! But I can relate-oh-so-well to this, Kelly. I’ve used this to motivate myself because I know what God has put in me, but if I’m not doing what I’m called to do, how is it the fault of the person who is doing what he/she was called to do of whom I am jealous? Now that’s a mouthful! Fabulous article. Thanks for sharing. Blessings!
[…] comparing in this 3 Part Series. Stay tuned for Part II: 3 Ways Comparing is Bad for Us and Part III: 3 Tips to Stop Comparing Once and For All. God has something far greater for us when we end comparing ourselves to […]
[…] Be sure to read Part I: “The Shocking Truth About Comparing” and Part III: 3 Tips to Stop Comparing Once and For All. […]
Love this! I’m sharing this post for sure!
Great! Share away!! Come back and visit me soon; I loved having you.
Thanks for linking up and for your insightful words!
I am so happy to be linked up! whoo-hoo! Thank you for your comment!
Kelly- I really enjoyed this series. I really need to not compare myself to others ! What a waste of time! Thanks for sharing your insights, I know God was reminding me His power is made perfect in my weakness.
Anna! Thank you for visiting. I know what you mean, comparing only hurts us. I am glad that God was reminding you of his truths. I can’t wait to see you soon and I am hoping you are managing ok with all the back to school happenings.
shut and LOCK the door. I love that. i hardly ever lock and keep going back to old habits of comparison. great stuff.
Oh yes, Kelly. I have been here. I still struggle with it but God is doing a work in my heart and mind. I shared this on the Compel forum, but I love what Ann VosKamp says about writing for an audience of One. That is my prayer going forward. And if he chooses to use it, all the better. Thanks so much for sharing. Wonderful truth here.
We really do have an audience of One. If we aren’t pleasing him and we are seeking to please man, we have fallen into a big trap. Thank you for visiting. It is an honor to have you, my Compel sister!
He is not an either or kind of God. He’s an expanding his kingdom kind of God, and he does that however he sees fit.
Whenever I catch myself going down that comparison road, I take a moment and think about how I can encourage the one I’m comparing myself to. I can always pray for them, but I can usually do even more for those I know in real life. That’s a great perspective shifter.
You are so right Gina. When we think about His goals, verses ours – it takes our eyes off of ourself and puts it on him. Thank you for sharing this. I love how you encourage others when you feel like you are starting down that road!
Thanks for the reminder Kelly. I fall into the trap to people please all the time. Your 3 steps help me to guard against the fall.