Friday, October 30, 2015


     Stop comparing yourself to others. Just stop it!
     As a yoga teacher, I see a lot of the self-defeating habit of comparison. We do classic sun salutations (a flowing sequence of several yoga postures) in nearly all my classes. They are always the same, and I usually lead the students through them. Occasionally I say to them, "Do a sun salutation on your own at your own pace." Comparison bursts onto the scene. What if I don't do it right? What if I'm slower than so-and-so? I can't do it myself. On and on.
     There will always be someone smarter, quicker, richer, thinner, more creative, whatever (!!) than you or me. Each of us has plenty of challenge being who we are--there is no time or energy to waste trying to be someone else.
     One way to notice the ugly habit of comparison is if the words "should" or "shouldn't" are invading your thoughts or spoken word. These indicate dissension between how you want to be or behave and how you think you ought to be or behave, based on some comparison. For example, I really want to go to my local coffee shop and read, relax and have coffee. But I should clean the house so that my weekend guests will think I'm as good a housekeeper as they are. There's lots of stress involved in this scenario. Can I live with a not-so-perfect house? What will my guests think? How clean is clean enough? It's irritating that I can't do what I really want to do. On and on.
     See? Comparison is endlessly self-defeating. Stop it!

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