“You create your thoughts, your thoughts create your intentions and your intentions create your reality.” – Wayne Dyer
Did you eye roll when you saw the title of this post? You might consider affirmations to be unrealistic “wishful thinking” and that’s okay because I used to think the same too! Well I did A LOT of research and now that I understand how our brain works, I have a lot more faith that positive affirmations do work. Before you disregard the power of positive affirmations it’s important to know that an affirmation is really anything you say or think so chances are, you’re already using affirmations whether you know it or not.
“Comparison is the thief of joy.”
Comparing yourself to others is as human as any other emotion and can quickly become a dangerous habit that is hard to break. It’s important to remember that being inspired by an individual is not the same as comparing yourself to an individual, inspiration fills you up, comparison empties you.
I am the perfect example of someone who used to spend far too much time using other people as a benchmark for my own happiness. It started off quite innocently with small comparisons that I’m sure we have all made at some point. While I was in school I would compare my appearance, academic achievement and possessions with others. When I graduated I added career choices, travel and relationships and once I became a parent I added parenting styles, houses and money into the mix so I was quickly falling down an endless rabbit hole of comparisons.
When you focus on what other people are doing you will virtually always end up on the losing side of the comparison because there will always be someone who has something that you want. Not only do these comparisons steal your joy but research has found that it creates feelings of envy, low-self-confidence, and depression which was exactly how I was feeling. The below tips have really helped me turn my daily struggle of comparing into a sometimes struggle and I hope they can help you too!
“When there are things to do, give it everything you’ve got. When there is nothing to do, do nothing.” – Ajahn Brahm
My anxiety can make taking a break impossible. Our family is constantly on the go and although it can be exhausting I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment when I go to bed at night and being distracted from my thoughts. When I stop, even if it’s for a brief a moment I can feel my anxiety overwhelm me. I start thinking of things I should be doing or I feel consumed in guilt for not being busy and then I start worrying about things I normally don’t have time to even think about. It’s a mindset that has formed unhealthy habits over the years and I have noticed that even when I do have some “relax time” I often distract myself with my phone or the TV.