::COMPARISON IS THE THIEF OF JOY::

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Last week I decided to go for a quick jog. It had been a while since my last run, but even though it was a rainy day, I felt like my body longed for a well-deserved exercise. I noticed that my endurance wasn’t what it used to be, but hey, I was doing my best! After 45 minutes I could see my house appear in the distance and I was about to finish my run. I smiled with self-fulfillment and decided to increase my pace to the finish line at home.

But then, out of nowhere came superwoman or “super mommy” so to speak. She pushed a stroller (with twins!) while running past me like a gazelle. Her legs must have been light as feathers, because she past me without a single drop of sweat! OMG woman, are you serious?! I though. In one split second my runners high evaporated in the air.

When I returned home, I realized that it is in our human nature to compare ourselves to others. Comparing yourself to other’s can be both inspiring and motivating. But when this comparison turns into jealousy, having less self-esteem, feeling frustrated etc. it might be time to snap out of it and give yourself a break.

Yes, we live in a competitive society with high expectations. We not only expect a lot from ourselves but also from others. We’re fighting to get the best job, we want to have cutting-edge gadgets, wear cool outfits, travel to faraway places and share the latest news before anyone else beats you to it.

Don’t we all know that wanting more stuff, wanting more money, wanting more parties and friends than the person next to you, is not the key to happiness? Will Smith was right when he said:

“Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.”

The truth is: there will always be someone “better” than you (smarter, taller, skinnier, faster, and richer) but, there will always be someone “worse” than you (fatter, shorter, slower, and poorer). Let’s just focus on ourselves instead!

Want to give yourself a comparison break? Below you’ll find a list of 10 things you should focus on instead:

  • Think positive (you won’t create a positive life with a negative mind)
  • Stay true to yourself
  • Know your values (see blog post 24th June)
  • Celebrate your strengths
  • Surround yourself with those people who inspire you
  • Learn from your mistakes (you’re only human)
  • Know when “good” is good enough!
  • Get on your own side (cheer yourself on)
  • Improve yourself one step at a time
  • Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle

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:: ADVICE OF THE DAY::

::LOSE YOUR JOB, BUT FIND YOURSELF + YOUR VALUES::

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We all face difficult decisions and life always finds a way to throw circumstances at us, which test our patience, our character and our peace of mind.

Let’s take today’s crisis for example. Many of us have lost our jobs and face a time of uncertainty. But what if we use this time as an opportunity to reflect, get to know ourselves, figure out what drives us and reassess our priorities? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to set priorities that lead to happiness? By setting your true life values, you are able to focus on what’s really important to you.

Now let’s look at the story of John:

Ever since the day John lost his job, his goal has been to find a job ASAP. He spent day after day applying for jobs and had many sleepless nights feeling frustrated about the situation. He completely forgot about the world around him, because he wasn’t allowing himself to have fun. As weeks went by and piles of rejections followed, John finally realized that he wasn’t acting or feeling like himself anymore, he felt stressed and uncomfortable. He completely forgot to have fun, he forgot to relax and he even forgot to socialize with family and friends. John’s job hunt gave him tunnel vision and he lost track of his true life values.

It is not surprising that John felt this way. When your behavior doesn’t match your values, you begin to sense an uneasiness that slowly grows inside you. This uncomfortable feeling tells you that something in your life is off and you feel out-of-touch with yourself. These feelings can be the source of your anxiety and unhappiness.

But when your actions and words do align with your values, life is generally good and you feel content, confident and satisfied – even in the middle of a job hunt, sticking to your values can make life easier.

If you are eager to change your jobless situation, you have to realize that besides doing the best you can to find that job, the economy is not something you can control. So, what if you tried to change the strategy in which you deal with the situation?

When you know your life values, you will know what your motives are; the “why” behind your actions. Your values will serve as a compass in your life. And if you learn to live from your values ​​instead of achieving concrete goals, you’ll feel more in control of all the situations that life throws at you.

So, here is a simple exercise for you!

Below you’ll find a sample list of values.(I am sure there are more detailed lists/tests that can be found online)

1. Copy the list

2. Mark the values which most resonate with you

3. Sort your list in order of priority

As you scan the values list below, you may find that while most values have little or no significance to, there are those values that just jump out and call to you, and you feel, “Yes, this value is part of me.”

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This values list is merely a quick guide to the exercise, so feel free to add unlisted values to your own list and elaborate as to why this value is important to you.

Good luck, have fun and feel free to share your values with our readers!

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