Happy Summer!! Let’s Talk Avoiding Comparisons!

Summer is here, and if you’re anything like me you are beyond excited for it to be heating up! May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so I wanted to take this month to highlight comparisons we are all guilty of making and how to avoid doing it. Since it is now getting warm out it means it’s vacation and swimsuit season. For many this isn’t a big deal, but no matter your age, some people find it easy to begin making comparison especially when scrolling through social media. Phrases like “I’m not as skinny as her” or “He looks like he’s having a much better summer than me” can begin clouding your mind and before you know it your mental health can be seriously damaged. So what can you do to avoid comparing yourself to others? Well, it’s easy to say just not to do it, but reality is, that doesn’t help. Here’s three easy steps to avoid comparison from someone who struggles with it too:

  1. Take a break from social media. While social media does keep us connected during times when we are away from family, classmates, and friends, it also can be beneficial to unplug from time to time. Also remember social media is the best parts of a person’s life, and most of the time they struggle just like you with comparison, or body and lifestyle dysmorphia.
  2. Focus on yourself. Instead of getting caught up in what other people look like and participate in, busy yourself. Workout, try new recipes, or even train your dog. Also, try to do mini day trips to make you feel like you’re doing exciting things. While not everyone can financially afford to go on a Caribbean vacation, most people can find public parks, hidden waterfalls, and nearby cities to go to and explore.
  3. Finally catch yourself when you’re comparing yourself to someone else and counter those thoughts with positive affirmations about yourself. This one is maybe the hardest thing to do however it is a really good exercise for your mind. When you think “Oh wow she has a better body than I could ever achieve” finish that thought with “and I have pretty eyes” or something similar. Ultimately, you won’t always be able to completely stop yourself from automatically making comparisons, but it’s important to end the thought by uplifting yourself and the life you live. Always use the word “and” rather than “but” when thinking a positive thought about yourself because we are not trying to put down or minimize another person’s beautiful appearance or life. Instead, we are reframing our negative thoughts about ourselves. The focus of your self-compliment should never be something you think you possess that is better than another person or else the vicious cycle of comparison repeats itself. Like I said this tip can be tricky to follow through on, but it is so rewarding if you do it right.

In general, I hope everyone has a fantastic summer with plenty of time to recharge and relax. Be sure to take care of your individual mental health, and happy mental health awareness month!!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *