How do you compare?
“I work harder than she/he does.”
“She/He doesn’t work hard enough to deserve it.”
“Why can’t I have that house?”
“She/He only gets what she wants because of her body/looks/clothes.”
“Oh my god, look at her/him, what a ______.”
If you’ve ever said or thought one of these, read on. They’re just the tiniest little sample of judgemental critiques that we throw around at other people, often thinking, mistakenly, that we feel better for it, or that we are justified.
Of course we won’t feel better for it, and we’re not justified. We throw critiques and judgements at others, because we feel like shit, whether we admit it or not.
There are injustices in the world that need our critique, and our action. Absolutely. But our everyday judgements of others and critical lashings out are not the same. At their root, they are our insecurities being projected onto others. They are the ugliness that we speak in our heads to ourselves, let loose on others (because we probably do it to ourselves too much already).
There’s the “softer” form of lashing out with critique and judgment, too - the comparison. Sometimes, this even comes out as a compliment to someone, “Oh my god, I wish I could do that,” “You are so lucky, I wish I had that,” “I’ll never be able to do that.”
Don’t get me wrong, I know that sometimes, compliments are sincerely given, and when we accept ourselves for who we are, our appreciation for the beauty and accomplishments of others is a gift we give. But so much of the time, our compliments are masking an inner dialog that says “She’s better than me,” or “I’m not as good as her.”
Comparisons and judgements. They lead us farther and farther away from what matters, from self love, from healing, from compassion and the ability to give love.
Now, if you’re one who is dishing out judgements and critiques to others, or self-critiques disguised as compliments, I’m not going to say “Love yourself TODAY,” as if acknowledging the wound heals it. That’s not going to happen because that’s not how it works.
Acknowledging it is a start. If you’ve lashed out at another person, apologizing comes next. If you’re giving yourself a hard time, apologizing to yourself is a good place to start, because you do not deserve the negative, cutting down, BS talk any more than others do. If you don’t know where to go from there, try writing down something that you don’t like about yourself. Not easy, but be honest. Write it down, and start exploring where it comes from. Don’t dwell in the past, but you can’t let go of it unless you can be honest about its presence.
If it helps, start a list of the things you love about yourself, too. But don’t skip the hard work of digging out the insecurities and exploding them for the BS that they are. You are enough. You don’t need to compare. You don’t need to judge. You are enough. And you need to see it.
To be continued….