Over the last few months I have been feeling really challenged by these two words, ‘BE YOU’. To be honest, I have sat down to write this post many times but have not had the clarity to express fully what I really want to say. However, I figure if I start typing it will surely come to me! So please bear with me as I share this important truth that has been placed on my heart.
I am so thankful that I am surrounded by so many amazingly talented and beautiful friends. People who make this world beautiful just by being themselves. They share so many talents and qualities that I so admire and respect. You don’t have to look far on social media too and you will hear about and see many images of incredible people who create, share, achieve and live their dreams. Their lives seem to be picture perfect and in knowing these people and seeing these images it is very easy to feel that somehow I don’t measure up.
I love social media, don’t get me wrong. It is incredible to be able to connect with others and share parts of your lives, your passions, giftings, and your world but in saying that I need to remind myself when I see all these incredible people that being me is actually ok too! In fact being me is flipping awesome! I don’t need to feel pressure to present the best photos or dress a certain way or keep up with others, I don’t need to change in order to be accepted.
There is a quote which says, “admire someone else’s beauty without questioning your own”.
It comes down to where I am getting my self worth from. Am I desiring it from other people or getting it directly from God? If I am getting it from God then I am not only confident in who I am but also in my role and what my personal sphere of influence is.
I have loved reading the book ‘Simply Tuesday’ by Emily P Freeman over the last few months (I highly recommend it!). There is a chapter which talks about comparison. Emily tells a story about a visit to a large swimming complex where there were many life guards positioned around the pools and each of them were assigned to what seemed like an 8 foot area. They were responsible for monitoring their own 8 feet of pool. She watched as they paced up and down not moving or venturing from their individual posts. They were all doing an important job; keeping people safe while they swam. Each one had a different position and role but they all worked to serve a greater purpose.
You know, life is like this, hey! We each have our own assignment, our own giftings, our own roles but so often we find ourselves looking at something that we wish we had or wish we could do better. We identify lack in ourselves when we really should be focusing on our own 8 feet not someone else’s.
As a Mum it is hard not to compare what you do with how someone else does something. At times it can feel like a bit of a competition. Life however is not a competition. Instead of comparing and feeling less than we should or pressure to measure up we need to be comfortable with who we are and what we personally have to offer. Instead of feeling envy or tearing others down we need to focus on building up and encouraging those around us.
Your 8 foot assignment is unique and important, tailored just for you. Even though I look around and others seem to have more, be more, achieve more, I can be confident in the fact that my 8 feet is designed just for me, it is my personal responsibility. It is ok to be me. I can rest in the fact that being me is exactly who I am meant to be, who I am designed to be.
I have been learning the importance of not underestimating myself by comparing myself with others. It is our differences that make us unique and define just how special we are. Instead of letting other’s successes reduce my worth I plan on letting it propel me towards my own goals, let it inspire me to celebrate my own achievements and my unique talents. To celebrate with those who reach new achievements, knowing that their gifting is going to be different to mine, it doesn’t make me any less or them any more.
Comparison often leads to dissatisfaction. Instead be real, stop striving and just be. There is 8 feet in this world that can only be expertly lived by you. I’m going to finish this post with a truth coach shared with me by a wonderful friend; ‘Comparing myself to others is a game that cannot be won. It will either lead to elitism and arrogance or feelings of inadequacy’. I’m not going to play the comparison game anymore.
Simply put, I’m going to BE ME.