my disease

i have a sickness that i'm sure thousands of other people, especially women, suffer from.
it is debilitating. 
it is extremely harmful to my body & mind. 
and if left untreated, it can make life not worth living. 

this disease is "i'm-not-good-enough-otosis" 
or otherwise known as "always-comparing-ititis"

[also, i watch Doc McStuffins with Elijah and got good at making up words :)]

this is something i have always struggled with. 
whenever i get in a bad place, the first thing to blame is that i'm comparing... again. 
it has put a wedge in my friendships, in my relationships, in my parenting, and in my marriage. 

when i first started to go to therapy, the first thing i told my counselor was,
"i have a blessed life. but i don't know how to be happy in it."
the problem was i saw so many of my friends going on trips, moving into houses, having cutest/most fashionable clothes, buying the newest gadgets & products, looking way more beautiful, more talented, more crafty, more likeable.... 

do you see where i'm going with this? 

i could keep going. 

Adam is well aware of this problem. he {unfortunately} has to call me out on it often. 
i know it's tiring for him. 
it's tiring for me. 
but they say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. 
and thankfully a year and half ago i was able to do so in a safe environment

ever since i have realized that i have this disease
{and it really is a disease}
{and it unfortunately took me some time to finally admit that i even had it},
i have had to constantly make conscious decisions to avoid things that would make my comparing worse. or actively seek out situations that will help me feel more worthwhile.

with the help of my counselors & my loving husband, i have tried to make a list of {mostly} fail-proof ways to combat the sickness that is comparison-ocosis:
-i try to limit social media, 
-i limit some of the blogs i read, 
-i try to focus on & remember my blessings daily,
-i surround myself with people that are supportive & understanding, 
-i try to focus on things that i love, not trends that will pass away {definitely can be hard. but worth it}, 
-and instead of feeling sorry for myself, i try to actually improve on the things that i may not like. 

it is a work in progress. 
but i know that if i want to be happy, truly & wonderfully happy, this is the first thing that must go. 
and eventually, practice will make perfect, right? 
or at least soon there will be a more permanent cure.
[it's called higher self esteem :)]


Casey said...

I hear ya, girlie! And thank you for sharing your heart! I totally understand where you are coming from...I think as bloggers we all get attacked by this comparison-ocosis every now and again. And it's human nature to covet the lives that others have, especially if the life you're living isn't meeting your expectations all the time. The good thing is that you've got a supportive family and counselor who continually remind you of the wonderful things you DO have. Your list of thinks to do to combat the sickness is a great start, too! I need to do many of these things as well! :) Great post, Megan!

Aubrey said...

I love this post so so much! I definitely fall into this far too often. I'm trying really hard to have fun every single day and find joy in as much as possible so hopefully I won't have room in my life for comparisons. Thanks for being so real.

Alyx said...

So I absolutely LOVE this post. You are not alone! I think you are 100% correct when you say that thousands of other people have this same problem. I find myself making comparisons a lot, especially in the blogging world. I find myself jealous of other bloggers who get to take cool trips, or can afford nicer things than me, and it's not right. I've had to stop reading a few blogs because I'd find myself more unhappy after reading the blog than I was before. It's my own fault, but I think you're right - sometimes you just have to cut out things like social media because those are the things that encourage comparison. Those are the distorted windows where we see the parts of people's lives that they WANT us to see, and it's so easy to forget that. Anyway, I'm rambling. Sorry for the novel, but thanks for the post!

Unknown said...

I get that.. Especially in the blogging/social media world where people only share the good things. I know some bloggers, the ones I follow and love, try not to do that. They keep it real. But most just share all the happy, positive things that happen neglecting the truth behind them. Which is ok... It's ok to just be positive online if you want. The problem comes when readers believe that the positive is all there is... We have to make ourselves realize that a whole lot of the real life gets left out!!! They're just the same as the rest of us!

LidyD said...

This is such a wonderful post - it's very honest! I think there are a lot of people that feel the same way, they might not just be brave enough to admit it. I feel this way ALL the time. I think that list is a great idea to keep in mind when battling with comparison. Thanks for sharing this - it's a topic that doesn't get talked about enough :)


Ashley said...

Definitely you are not alone. I think we as women, and moms especially, can have such a hard time with this. You are right about it taking a conscious effort to stop yourself from comparing. I have to remember that when I feel jealous or sad that I have so many things that so many people would love to have. That usually stops my pity party right in it's tracks.... until I do it again. :) I guess I try to turn to prayer and remember to thank God daily for what I DO have instead of what I don't. It is not always easy, though.

Dus of Cuddly Cacti said...

This is truly a wonderful post Meagan and I really admire your honesty here. It's wonderful that you're open to it so that your husband is able to help by calling you out on it too (I say that because I've found people don't call us out on things not because they don't want to help but for fear we'll get upset). I def noticed that w/ social media for myself and although a few friends got upset, have noticed that I am WAY happier and do less comparing after deactivating my fbook & making a new one w/ only a handful of closest friends. I can be so easy to compare on blogs too, but i def try to remidn myself that usually we're only seeing the positives. Love your advice on focusing on things you love & trying to improve on things- thanks for sharing your struggles so openly and for your helpful tips as well!

Unknown said...

I know I already commented on Instagram this morning, but wanted to make sure I actually left a comment on your post!

I think as a Nation we suffer from this. We always want MORE. It can be hard to not get envious when we see someone else doing MORE, that have MORE. It can be so hard to take a step back and realize how important it is to live within your means and that everything can happen for you in due time if you are willing to work for it.

But with that said, it might never come, the materialistic things, or the talent we wish we had, and at the end of the day we have to be happy with who we are and our personal progress.

It can be such a hard balance and I applaud you for sharing your struggles with it because I think we all face this challenge on some level and can relate you.

You have such a beautiful and caring family, and you can you truly love each other. You are so lucky and blessed to have them so they can be your support and your joy.

Here is to all of us being a little better. Choosing to be happier with what God has given us :) and anything he blesses us with in our future.

Thank you for the beautiful and honest post.

On a lighter note, please make that road trip now and come hang out with us all again, we miss you! :)

Unknown said...

oh and sorry for just leaving a comment with my youtube account and not my blog hahaha oops!

Unknown said...

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Me said...

You are very BRAVE for always putting yourself out there. You continue to be true to yourself and your family and for that I really admire you :). I guess you could say I have a case of "admire-itis" ... hee! hee!

Brittany Michelle said...

I am having an incredibly bad day not to mention that I have been feeling really down lately. I am going through a bunch of changes both personally and with my business and all I can say is that I needed to read this today. You really made me feel better and it was like you gave me a virtual b!#@h slap to the face and told me that I am not alone in the way I feel and that I am worth while.

Alisha said...

I've got the perfect blog post for you. I started thinking of it this morning. Ill post on Friday for you!! I pray it'll help you and so many other women out there too :)


bonbon said...

Thanks for sharing this Meghan! I love it when bloggers are so real and vulnerable. Its not easy!

bonbon said...

Thanks for sharing this Meghan! I love it when bloggers are so real and vulnerable. Its not easy!

Amanda Schroeder said...

I just barely made a post on comparison, too! I think so many women don't ever admit that. But really. It's all true. I hope you're doing okay. And if you need a friend or a listening ear, I'm your girl! Because I have a disease, too! One that I honestly can't help but compare my life that revolves around that others. Ahh.

Unknown said...

I love this. I just wrote about my self image last night. about how we always compare ourselves to other women. and it makes us feel both inadequate but also makes us less compassionate towards others because we think they must surely have it better than us, so why do they deserve compassion....its a hard thing to deal with. and makes me do things like photoshop every picture I post of myself.. because especially I'm blog world everyones lives and photos are so beautiful....

Unknown said...

I read this post earlier as well.
Sometimes I wonder if it's possible to be a woman and not compare!?!?! I mean, I know it is, really, but it's like everywhere I turn there is something to compare myself too. Its awful and really really harmful!

Hannah Richins said...

Just stumbled across your blog and I have to say I really appreciate your honesty! Comparing myself to others is definitely one of my weaknesses and I like your ideas of limiting social media and some of the blogs you read. Sometimes I think if I deleted instagram or facebook I'd be sooooo much happier. Thanks for sharing this!!!!