We all do it. We spend time daily, even hourly measuring our life, talents, physical appearance and more against that of others. In an age of social media it is a constant struggle to stay grounded and be comfortable in our own skin. It seems everyone else is better, prettier and more talented. Everyone else’s lives are more glamorous and fun than ours. I am as guilty as the next person. I am only 4’11” tall and would like to be a lot taller, would love to have a jazzy voice and sing in Manhattan!!
As a vocal teacher I hear many students complain about their voice and how they wish it sounded different. They have aspirations of “making it” and see how someone on instagram is famous from posting a You-Tube video! But what many are missing is that comparing ourselves to others zaps our energy and focus as well as limits our growth as an individual and an artist.
So here are 3 steps you can take today to start the process of “kicking the comparison habit”:
1. Gratitude, Gratitude, Gratitude: Recognizing all the good things you have or your unique strengths will shift your mental, emotional and physical energy. Gratitude will open your eyes to all the possibilities that are around you. Life then becomes more fun and exciting and new opportunities will present themselves. Keep a “Gratitude Journal” daily and write a few things that you are thankful for. Was it a lunch with a special friend, the ability to go for a walk with a your dog, sharing a great song with a co-worker or learning a new skill…whatever makes your heart sing put it to paper.
2. Remind Yourself You Are Enough: Be kind to yourself. It is ok to be not perfect, as we all are not. You have all the stuff inside of you to be a blessing to this world. Celebrate your strengths, be proud of them and use them to make someone else’s day. A great tool is to put “structure” into your daily life to remind yourself of one of your strengths. Attach a sticky note to your computer with a quote, display a piece of artwork by you as a reminder of your creativity, or play a great song each morning when you get up to set the tone for your day. The sky is the limit!!
3. Find Inspiration: Comparing our lives with others is foolish, but finding inspiration and learning from others is wise. Look around you. Is there someone in your life you admire and has a healthy self esteem. Take them out for coffee and ask them about their life; be curious!! Read a book about someone in your area of interest or strengths. Open your heart and mind to try new things and grow.
One of my favourite quotes is from the fashion icon Coco Channel “Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself”. I encourage you to start living and not wasting your time comparing.
“A flower does not think of competing to the flower next to it, it just blooms”
Love to hear your comments!!
Angie Money, Vocal and Life Coach, Edmonton Academy of Music