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The Joy Thief

Thursday, May 31, 2012

"Comparison is the thief of joy." - Theodore Roosevelt 

In my introspection these past few weeks (read more about it here and here), I've found myself meditating on the above quote a lot.

I'm realizing that much of my identity has been wrapped up in how I view myself in comparison to others. If I compare myself to someone and find that I'm "better," I gain confidence. If I compare myself to someone and find that they're "better," I lose confidence. But in both scenarios, other people have the power to determine my worth.


I've lived a lot of my life this way - which has led to seasons of semi-depression (with vats of cake-flavored ice cream) and seasons of overconfidence. Life becomes a competition: one where I'm always struggling to be "the winner."

Amidst all of this, where's the joy? How can I love my life when I'm trying to determine if I'm skinnier than that girl, or smarter than that guy, or if I'm a better decorator, dresser, exerciser, speaker, blogger, artist, writer, singer, baker, wife, friend, future mother?!? It's exhausting and sad.

My favorite people (are you allowed to have favorite people?) are those who are completely confident in who they are. They can honestly celebrate the successes of others - because it doesn't change their "ranking" in this ugly game that so many of us play everyday.

So, I'm finding ways to stop playing. For instance, if I'm jealous of someone's outfit, I've started telling that person how much I like it. That way, my brain doesn't have time to start critiquing their "ridiculously ugly shoes (geez, she should know better!)" just to make myself feel okay again.

Plus, I think knowing your weakness is half the battle, right? :)

PS - Don't forget to enter the Yiskah Knits giveaway this week! If it's not your style - don't let that stop you! You can always give the ring to your friend, mom, sister, aunt, cousin, barista, doctor, or landlord. (Or, you could win it for me.... Just sayin.)

[Photo from here]


  1. I'll spare you my constant "I know just what mean!", but.. I do :)

    Sometimes I have to stop myself from looking through other people's work because I compare mine to theirs way too much.

    1. Me too! There are so many creative people in this world. When I compare myself to other people, I feel so lame. So, I've been trying not to look at other people's work too much... Hah!

  2. Love, love, love you thoughts!


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