There's Nothing Productive About Constantly Comparing Yourself To Other People

There's Nothing Productive About Constantly Comparing Yourself To Other People, So Stop

We need to stop this. Stop acting as if life is a race and you have to be the first to finish.

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It has always been an ambition of mine since my freshman year of high school to get into the gym and consistently work out. My weight is something I was always insanely insecure about, and I wanted to lift in order to build muscle mass to instill some confidence in me.

However, I was unfortunately inhibited in my early stages of high school because in the gym I would always focus on the other guys around me. I would always fear their judgment and take note of how advanced they were. I stopped going for a while until the end of high school and the beginning of college and pushed myself to go despite my feelings of discomfort. I soon realized once I began going more frequently that it wasn't the other people in the gym ostracizing me.

There was only one person doing that. And that person was me.

I suddenly came to this realization that no one is worried about what I am doing. Everyone is focused on themselves and doing their own thing. But most importantly, I realized that we are all on our own journey. We are all on different paths of life that maintain a different pace for each person. I cannot compare myself to the other guys in the gym because I'm not where they are yet. I'm not meant to be where they are yet. My design for life is MY design. And I need to be patient with the rate at which my life is progressing.

This, of course, is merely an example. I want to generalize this concept more and broaden it to a more open philosophical discussion. We need to stop comparing ourselves to other people altogether because we are each different individuals with different lives and different goals and different end destinations. It doesn't matter if you achieve major success at the age of 18 or if you achieve major success at the age of 60. You are not behind schedule, nor are you ahead.

You are fine right where you are.

I think this is especially salient to talk about in terms of college, specifically because I'm in college myself and a lot of my readers are college students as well. We have this propensity to sprint in a marathon with everyone around us. We are constantly in competition with one another trying to be the best and succeed before the person next to us can.

We need to stop this.

Stop acting as if life is a race and you have to be the first to finish. I understand we live in one hell of a competitive world, and yes, you will most certainly have to fight for your success. You most certainly will have to go out there in the real world someday and compete with other people for jobs or some means of employment. But, there's sort of a dichotomy in what I am talking about. Competing for jobs is internalized perseverance and ambition. That is incumbent. That is tacit and individual and when that time comes it will be present and in the moment. My point is that we need to stop consciously viewing our lives as this perpetual disposition to compete. Instead of trying to achieve success as fast as you possibly can or wanting to triumph before everyone else and distancing your mind into a fabricated future, take a breath. Take in where you are right now and live in the now. Your success will come when it's your time to succeed.

Chrissy Metz, an American actress and singer, had some beautiful words to share about life endeavors.

And I will leave you with her words:

"You're not behind in life. There's no schedule or timetable that we must all follow. It's all made up. Wherever you are right now is exactly where you need to be. Seven billion people can't do everything in exactly the same scheduled order. We are all different with a variety of needs and goals. Some get married early, some get married late, while others don't get married at all. What is early? What is late? Compared with whom? Compared with what? Some want children, others don't. Some want a career, others enjoy taking care of a house and children. Your life is not on anyone else's schedule. Don't beat yourself up for where you are right now. It's YOUR timeline, not anyone else's, and nothing is off schedule."

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I Hate That I Struggle To Love My 'Midsize' Body

I gained a few pounds, but that shouldn't be the end of the world, yet it is in a sense.

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Junior year of college has been quite the wild ride. I've had the best academic year of my entire life, yet struggled, in the end, to even want to get anything done. I didn't care about a lot of the things that used to matter to me.

I gained weight at the beginning of my second semester and went up a jean size, so half of my summer wardrobe just doesn't fit me anymore, and it's made me feel embarrassed. I went from a size 6 to an 8/10, and while it doesn't seem like a big jump to the average person, it was to me. I don't like looking in the mirror and seeing a bigger pooch than usual, or how my thighs have gotten super irritated because they also got bigger. Chaffing I used to only have in the summer occurred in late January and even scared my inner thighs. It's not cute and it hurts when it flares up. I am terrified to wear my bikinis again because I know they won't fit, and the second I put on shorts my thighs are going to want to kill me if I don't kill them first.

I came to really love my body last summer after struggling through a rough breakup where I stopped caring about myself. I owned myself last summer and as much as I want to again this summer, I'm really struggling with the idea of it.

All I feel like I see on social media are skinny girls with zero hint of a pooch or thick thighs in sight. I've never been a skinny girl and I never want to be, but I can't help but envy the people I've seen online and in person. Of course, what I see on social media isn't really accurate, but it's still been tough to look at these girls who seem like they don't have a care in the world. They can eat whatever they want and still look flawless. They can throw on a bikini and not have to feel like they need to suck everything in so no one sees their pooch hanging over their bikini bottom. As a stress eater who is still too terrified to try on her bikinis, I'm not looking forward to showing my body off when all I want to do sometimes is hide it because I don't feel happy with what I see.

I will always love being a curvier girl and YouTubers like Sierra Schultzzie, Carrie Dayton, and Lucy Wood have given me a new boost of inspiration to embrace the body I have right now. I'm not skinny but I'm not plus sized either. I feel pressure from myself and certain people in my life to be skinnier and not "let myself go." I

'm so happy to have friends who have helped me through my struggles and support me, even when I don't want to support myself. These YouTuber's have opened my eyes to the fact that this body deserves to be loved just as much as my former, smaller body.

I want to love myself with 100% of my being and I hate how much hatred I've allowed to go on inside of me. There is only one me and I need to be proud of her. Maybe she gained some weight and isn't what society expects from a girl, but she's still amazing and has so much to offer.

I wish I could see more girls like me on YouTube or social media offering a representation of my body type, which I hardly ever see. Aerie and American Eagle have done a fantastic job of including different body types and it's been a great help in seeing that they really to make clothes for all types of women, not just a size zero to two. Added representation really does wonders for someone suffering from low body confidence like me.

While I hope to begin my journey into losing a few pounds this summer by jogging whenever I get the chance, I'm not going to put intense pressure on myself to look a certain way. I am single for the summer and exploring life with my best friends by my side. I'm here to be the best version of me that I can. I cannot let negative thoughts about myself to dictate how I feel every day. I am strong, I am beautiful, and I need to love myself and my body as I am.

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Looking Back At My Past

When I moved out of my dad's house at 18, I learned several life lessons the hard way. It was an uphill battle to figure out "adulting." I hope this will give some people the ability to learn certain things without going down the hard path.

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Life has a way of teaching lessons when you are overwhelmed. The more you are exposed to, the easier it is to learn these lessons. This article goes into what I wish I knew when I first got onto my own. There were many struggles, hardships and tough times you go through when you start your walk of life alone. But with it comes victories, and the knowledge of being able to get through anything. I hope when people read this article they will see what I put as a priority to learn when you become independent.

1. Money!

Learn how to budget! Learn how you're bank works, learn about taxes. Yes these seem like boring subjects, but money, or the lack thereof, can and will make your life miserable. This is something that many adults have trouble with, and it will put stress onto you. Just taking an afternoon to learn about what you need to do for your money needs will reduce stress.

2. Make at least one friend at the place you live.

The first apartment complex I lived at, I met a (I think) 45-50 year old man. I will not actually say his name but for this purpose his name is "Tim". Tim had lived in that complex for about 20 years, and he knew the staff and the residents. If I needed help or someone to talk to. He was more of a father figure than a creepy old guy. I was new to the town, living by myself, in the middle ground between a couple of in-town gangs. I needed all the help I could get, and when you have a connection it helps.

3. Know the differences between needs and wants.

Figure out your needs: food, rent, utilities. This type of thing ties into money and time. Do not invest too much time in people that are not good for you. Invest your time in your interests, hobbies, things that make you content. When you put your time in someone who at the end isn't worth it, it will occupy your mind months after they are gone.

4. Stay in contact with your family. 

My family is pretty distant to each other. We could probably go a year without talking and it wouldn't bug me. My mom and I have gotten close recently. Generally the 'after high school' years. My mom has helped me through hard times, she has leaded me an ear, or some tough advice. Yes we've had our hard times, but there are many things that I have learned from her. I understand that once you get out on your own, it is easy to stop talking to them; especially if you had a rough time growing up. A story for another time, but if you can stay in contact even if it's as little as a text from now and then. Family is something that is hard to replace once they are gone.

5. The way life teaches lessons. 

Life will teach lessons easy at first, then they will get harder to learn as we get older. An example of this is keeping your room clean as a child, then when you have an apartment. There is more cleaning to do. If you add kids and a house to that, it's even harder. My mom has an odd way of explaining this lesson. "It's like getting hit with a 2x4." The lesson first hits you, and it's small like a golf ball. Then the baseball hits you if you didn't learn before. Before you know it you get hit by a 2x4 and the lesson will hurt in someway. So please learn it before you get hit with a 2x4.

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