Probably the greatest blows to our self-confidence are self-inflicted. Our friends would never tell us, “Sheesh, you’re SO stupid!” Our family would never say, “Ugh, you look awful.” or “Who would want you, you have no personality” yet we don’t hesitate to tell ourselves something negative when we look in the mirror or look at others who we think have a better life than we do.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said “Envy is ignorance. Imitation is suicide.”
What he means is that envy shows our ignorance – our ignorance in not knowing the best that is within us, the best of who we are. Imitation is suicide because we are killing the best of who we are, killing what is that makes us special.
Psychologists and other wise people recommend that we not compare ourselves to others. The best quote I’ve ever read is this: There will always someone who is smarter than you. There will always be someone who is prettier than you. Just be the best that YOU can be.
I know it’s hard not to do comparisons. I think it is second nature to all of us. But anytime I start feeling bad about it, I whip out my list of all the things I like about myself. I try to be my own best friend by focusing on what is working for me rather than being envious and/or imitating someone else.
You can do the same. Make a list, today, of everything that is special about you. Look at yourself like you would look at a friend that you admire and be honest – would you really notice a misshaped eyebrow above your friend’s gorgeous brown eyes? There are many positive things that make you special. Maybe, like me, you are not the smartest, or the funniest or the cutest of your friends. But I know that I am a unique combinations of things that no one else in the world can match. Celebrate that you are special in that unique combination! Own your quirks and who you are. There is no other YOU in the entire world!