My husband and I just saw Michael Jackson ONE at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. It was AMAZING! I was inspired for many reasons—maybe most especially by a man with one leg who could dance circles around most people with two!!
I’m almost embarrassed to admit that I was also overcome with a slight comparison bug, and it left me feeling a little bit discouraged….
Actually, that’s not 100% true. I went into the show already feeling a little discouraged because I had been spending way too much time hyper focused on all my flaws, feeling “less than” everyone else around me. I decided, after the show, that I was tired of being just “good enough.” I want to be excellent at… SOMETHING!!
“Maybe if I could learn just one dance at Michael Jackson level, I could feel better about being average at everything else….” 😂😭😑🙄🤪
Seriously, though! As funny as it seems to me now, this stuff really happens to me sometimes! Can you relate?
Sometimes it’s hard to believe that “Every Master was once a Disaster” (Except for maybe Michael Jackson…😉).
Malcolm Gladwell says it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become a master at something.
I think there’s more to it than that… at least for me.
Of course, dedicating 10,000 hours of practice would most likely create progress in any area, but mastery could also have to do with a variety of other factors:
•𝐢𝐧𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐠𝐭𝐡𝐬 & 𝐩𝐞𝐫𝐬𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐲— There is a “nature” part of me that I (and every human being) was born with and that cannot change.
•𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐖𝐇𝐘—That same CORE part of me also plays a role in my core motivations—WHY I do the things I do. If my intention for doing something is merely to achieve a certain status, for example, the effort will likely lack substance.
•𝐩𝐡𝐲𝐬𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 & 𝐦𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐥 𝐡𝐞𝐚𝐥𝐭𝐡— The way I feel physically, mentally, and emotionally definitely plays a part in my ability to do something well. Nutrition, exercise, and sleep play a huge role in this (and, barring dysfunction, these are all things over which I have control.)
•𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐝𝐬𝐞𝐭—I definitely believe that my thought processes regarding myself and the task make a huge difference! And I promise, negatively comparing myself with someone else does not help!
So how does one cure the Comparison bug?
Here’s what I do:
1. First things first—I notice!
Awareness is the first key to change, and If I don’t notice that this comparison is happening, how can I change it?!
2. Next, I decide!
How long I want to feel down and out, and I set a timer. (10 minutes is usually plenty of time—sometimes I need longer.)
3. Finally, I check-in.
I call it a VOICE check-in or a Vocalise.
VOICE is an acronym that represents the 5 steps I have taken (and continue to take) to connect to my inner voice and live a more authentic life.
V: Value— How do I feel about myself right now? Do I remember my worth? Do I know what makes me happy? Am I honoring that?
To remind myself of my Value, I reference my Core Values, my CORE Temperament, and any other personal messages I have received during meditation.
O: Openness— Am I Open? Is my body open or am I sitting with my arms and legs crossed? (It makes a difference! 😉) Is my mind open? Am I willing to listen to what my heart is telling me? Am I willing to look at myself positively? Am I willing to try something new? Learn something new?
I usually start with listing 101 things that I want—experiences and characteristics included. Then I listen to any resistance I might have (I want ________, but ________) and challenge it.
I: Intentional Action— What is my intention? WHY do I want the things that I want? Am I willing to take ACTION— even if it feels uncomfortable, silly, scary, or impossible?
As I think about taking a step toward what I want, I imagine how it might feel to have it. Then I DO something (like dance!) to help me feel that way right now. There is power in moving your body!!
C: Clearing— Is my physical space clear ? What about my emotional space? What’s in my way?
If I am feeling cluttered, I take a few minutes to clear off my desk. Clean out a closet. Take a few intentional, deep breaths. Exercise. Laugh. Call a friend. Something that will change the channel in my mind.
E: Expression— Am I ready to speak my voice?
Now that the alarm has sounded, my wallow time is over. I am ready to get back to living life from the inside out—No more comparison—and show up as a unique, authentic, and much happier version of ME!
Give it a try, and let me know how it goes.