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Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Dare to (Not) Compare

Did you hear Nora Ephron died last week? Nora Ephron, writer of Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail, When Harry Met Sally. If you still aren't sad, then that's just sad. Because those are some of the best movies ever. Ever! And if you haven't seen them, well that just might be even sadder.


The amazing Nora also wrote a book called I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being A Woman.  I don't feel bad about my neck (yet), but I'm sure I'll get there because I obsessively lather neck cream on every night. However, a DJ on the radio was talking about Ms. Ephron's passing and the incredible body of work she left behind, and when the DJ said the title of the book, my thought was, "Well, I feel bad about my whole body."

Last week was a rough week as far as my body image goes. I pretty much wanted to wear sweats and hide in my house all week. But I didn't, because even when I feel like my fat rolls have multiplied over night, life still goes on.

This week I am feeling a little better, although I am far from loving my body. But I decided to make a little extra effort toward liking myself more this week. I decided to stop comparing myself to others for ONE week. I started Saturday, so that means I am on day four.

Trust me, a week is a looooong time for me to make this commitment. I am TERRIBLE about comparing myself to other people. Making comparisons is pretty much automatic, so this is a big challenge for me. I even critically compare myself to others to feel better about myself. I was going to list some examples, but then I realized how truly pathetic they sound.

I do a lot better about not comparing myself if I focus on the positives in my life or of other people when I would normally be comparing myself negatively or acknowledging their weaknesses.


So when I sat across from the girl my friend and I call "the girl with perfect hair" at church on Sunday, I thought about how cute her skirt was and wondered how she gets her hair so smooth instead of thinking about how tiny she is and that far more than just her hair is perfect. It has been hard. And church was especially tough because there are a lot of tiny, fit, beautiful girls there for some reason. But I made it out the doors feeling good about myself, which hasn't happened in a long time. 

My fat rolls haven't shrunk overnight, but how I feel about myself has changed this week. And that is important, because how can I teach my girls to love themselves and see their own beauty if I can't practice what I preach. So each day is a new day when I'll commit to trying to love myself a little more in spite of my flaws and all the things I would like to change about myself. I know it won't happen overnight and some days will be harder than others, but I'm not going to stop trying.



12 comments:

  1. We ALL struggle with this. I seem to compare myself to how strong a runner is or how they place in a race I'm in. It's stupid for me to do that because I know I am far better then I was when I started. It's just my competitive nature. Instead of loving your self in spite of your flaws, love yourself because of them. Embrace them. Doesn't mean you cannot change, it just means you love yourself as you are. It is then that the flaws seem not so important anymore.

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  2. I will always remember reading..."someone is always going to be better, faster, prettier, stronger...etc. etc....especially if you are looking for it"..Its very hard to read your post mostly because we all have felt that way one time or another and I feel for ya...cause its a shitty feeling. But I think making a knowing that you think that way sometimes and making it a point to think differently because you see how it truly isn't reality..(no one is perfect) is the best first step you could ever take...
    (I hope that made sense?)

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  3. I'm slightly confused? I haven't met you in real life but from the photos I saw of you at the Utah Valley race you are tiny to me! I know at times (ok all the times)I wish my size was smaller, but I just keep remembering I am blessed to have a healthy body and a body that will let me run (slow and steady though) and how I wish I was faster!! I love Pres. Uchtdorf's talk about "just stop it". Straight forward and to the point. Love him.

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  4. I could be wrong, but aren't all of those movies featuring Meg Ryan or Tom Hanks? lol. I guess the writer found actors that worked and stuck with them.

    And comparison is indeed hard to avoid. Like Annette said above, there is always someone richer, faster, better looking, etc. I guess I try to think that as long as I have enough of whatever I need I'm fine. Otherwise you can go crazy.

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  5. I struggle with loving myself and not comparing myself to others all the time. I think the best you can do is try to be aware, over time with awareness comes change. I don't know you personally but you do realize your kind-hearted, funny and beautiful right? I hope so. :)

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  6. I still struggle but truly believe I am at a point where I know that if I want to keep changing, it is all up to me. Feeling 'bad' about myself because of how others look/feel is my doing so release it.
    Took me a long time to get here but I like the view...

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  7. I struggle with body image a lot. And it doesn't help when my family have skewed notions of what's healthy or just plain skinny.

    You are right when you said, " And that is important, because how can I teach my girls to love themselves and see their own beauty if I can't practice what I preach."
    When I become a mom to a daughter, I want to teach her the beauty of fitness, the beauty of confidence and the beauty of just being comfortable in her own skin.

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  8. This is the second post of this nature I've read today. Seems like society does a number on us, doesn't it? I too run hot and cold on my body and struggle with just appreciating it for what it can do for me. Good for you for challenging yourself to the no comparison rule for a week!

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  9. I am in that place lately as well and have to get to where Zippy mentioned. . . a place where I appreciate what my body can do. But it is really hard to silence that inner critic and to not compare ourselves. I am returning to running after having a baby and there isnt a moment I dont think about how great other mothers look right after they have babies and here I am still plugging away after 4 months. And like you, I have a daughter. At this point I NEED to change for her and for me :) I hope you have a peaceful week where you are able to ignore that nasty little voice inside.

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  10. friend. this post made me sad because i dont want you to feel like this. but i know deep down i struggle all the time with this as well. its so hard to NOT compare and then i just feel down. im trying to focus on the fact that its okay that we are all different. and its okay that i have different strengths. and also to focus on how far i have come to motivate me than how far i have to go. but even saying those things doesnt make anything easier. its still a daily battle. but i think its one we can get through together right!?!

    i think you are beautiful inside and out...i have always felt completely blessed to have a friend in you. you are someone i admire daily and will miss dearly. let me know if you ever need anything! love ya!

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  11. This is the hardest part about being the father of girls. I don't know how to help them to have a good self image of their bodies. All that I can tell them is that they are beautiful... because they are... they take after their mother. ;)

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  12. Are you JOKING??!! Have you looked in the mirror lately? You couldn't pinch an inch if you tried. You are fit and fantastic!! End of story. Being the "fat" SIL on both sides of my family I totally understand where you're coming from but it seems so silly to hear from you. You are a great example of taking care of your body to your girls. Remember, a healthy body wins every time :) Luvs!

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