“I just really bloody hate her, Lucy. I can’t get over it and it’s driving me mad” She said as she peered through her fingers, her hands covering her eyes that were now grey and watery from the mascara tears running down her cheeks.
If you’re a human being living on planet Earth there is a good chance there will be THAT person, place or thing that immediately comes to mind that really winds you up and is, perhaps, the font of your compare and despair.
You track their movements on social media. You bitch about them in the pub. You give them the cold shoulder or fake smile when you’re in their company and anything they say or do is open to your judgment (snarky comment anyone?)
It is really easy to make other people the scapegoat for our own perceived lack of success and feelings of stuck-ness (ugh, the worst!) We, like my client above, can create icons for our hatred and frustration.
THAT person seems to have it easier, quicker, smoother and sexier than you when it comes to work, relationships, wellness or whatever is your preferred stick to beat yourself with. It’s all too easy to pin our crappy self-confidence on other people and stay powerless.
Feelings of not being enough can really brew when they have the perceived evidence of other people doing well to get hot in.
I’m putting two hand of confession up – when I lost my shit due to comparison there were a few people’s social media feeds I’d gorge on to beat myself up. I could lay my frustration at work, in my home and the dull ache of my ignored creativity at their feet because they had thinner bodies, designer shoes and a general sense of ease about them. What a nerve!
I had feelings of hate and jealousy and I’d even wish for them to lose it all. It was a very dark time and building up the good karma to make amends for that time is an everyday focus. I forgive myself. But I still don’t like the girl I was back then.
What has been instrumental in me moving on is, I’ve come to know in my now #comparisonfree life, that those girls and blokes were not the source of my discontent and upset.
It was what they represented for me.
The set of characteristics that when bundled together triggered my feelings of inadequacy and fear of the future and brought up all my ‘stuff’ to the surface.
I didn’t hate them but, like my tearful client at the start of the piece, it took me a while to untangle myself from that delusion. So how do you get yourself out of the tangle if that’s where you’re at right now?
It’s ALL about self-preservation and pro-active protection of yourself by crowding out the negative distraction.
- Clean up your feeds: Treat your social media feeds like a house party. Out with the negative, boring or jealousy inducing people, brands and things and IN with the positivity, good influences and inspiring stimulus
- Go Cold Turkey: Do not seek out or engage in or take the bait for bitching and negativity about THAT person or thing for you. Refuse to be drawn into it and for goodness sake, don’t initiate it. If you’re with people then change the subject, go to the loo or don’t reply to that text. These little pivots will make all the difference
- Do something in service of your dream: Start a Pinterest board for the decoration make over you’re craving for your bedroom, email about the course, look for another job, add those contacts on LinkedIn, set an alert for the flights to your dream travel destination. Go! Go! Go!
When your self focus takes a steep rise up, you won’t have time for any hatin’ on anyone else, in fact, you’ll probably forget they even used to have an impact.