It’s so easy to judge ourselves for not doing enough, for not playing enough, for not connecting, cleaning, or working enough.
But is it really easy?
Doesn’t feel easy to me.
So maybe it’s not easy, maybe it’s just familiar.
It’s familiar to go to the place where we make our actions or inaction mean something negative about us.
It’s familiar to notice the clean houses and think ours isn’t clean enough.
It’s familiar to see the families going sledding and thinking we aren’t being as fun as them.
And it all makes perfect sense because we have been taught that there is a right way and a wrong way to do life.
And when we see others doing it “right”, which must mean we are doing it “wrong”, we feel terrible.
So if it feels so terrible, why do we compare ourselves to other people?
I’ll tell you.
It goes all the way back to the cave days. Where our brain’s were hyper focused on staying alive. They were constantly surveying the environment looking for danger. They were interpreting what they saw as either life or death. And if there was another human out there who had bigger muscles or faster legs than that wasn’t good for us. We needed to be the strongest, we needed to have something to offer so that we could stay in the tribe.
Because if not, if we were out on our own, then that meant death.
So nowadays, when our brains immediately go to compare and despair, thinking all the people are better than us, here me now - nothing has gone wrong.
Absolutely nothing has gone wrong.
Our brains are simply interpreting the surroundings and making clean houses and super fun sledding weekends equivalent to stronger muscles and faster legs.
And if you’re thinking your house isn’t clean enough and your weekends aren’t fun enough, then your brain thinks you’re getting kicked off the island.
Which to our brain means death.
It makes perfect sense why judgment of others and judgment of ourselves is so prevalent.
It’s because our brain’s are afraid.
So the next time your well-intentioned brain working in default mode offers you the idea that someone is better than you because their car is clean, their garage is organized, or their child better behaved, you can pause.
You can notice how terrible you feel when you think they are better than you, remind yourself and your brain that nothing has gone wrong and you’re not in danger and instead of judging yourself, try on love.
Love of you, love of your brain just trying to keep you safe and love of all the people to whom you are comparing.
Love wins every time.
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