I came across this quote from Theodore Roosevelt on Pinterest (where else?):
“Comparison is the thief of joy.”
Those six simple words really got me to start thinking about how often I compare myself to others, especially when it comes to parenting.
Mothers are guilty of doing this all the time. I love my child more than her because… Is her stroller better? Is my kid smarter than hers? Is her kid more awesome than mine? That’s right, mama: We constantly compare, compare, compare – and for what, exactly?
Comparison, in itself, is not necessarily a bad thing. After all, a little bit of comparison can help bring light to areas in your life that could use some improvement. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be the best mother/wife/woman that you could possibly be.
That said, that typically isn’t the way that we use comparison. We use it to judge, to ease our conscience, to justify an expenditure of money on something totally unnecessary and irrelevant to our purpose. We spend so much time cultivating an image of the ideal woman that we forget that what works for one woman might not work for all.
We use comparison to rob ourselves – and our “competitors” – of joy and happiness and contentment and delight…
And we ruin women.
We ruin ourselves.
We ruin our daughters.
What can we do to stop this vicious cycle of comparison and start genuinely being happy for each other? I’m really interested in hearing your thoughts on this topic, because I cannot pretend to have the answer to something that I struggle with daily.