This podcast is to help lift up mamas who have been feeling let down, left out, left behind or just plain lost in their career while trying to raise a family; with faith filled perspective from the friend you didn’t know you needed.
Today Alyssa talks about comparison with a few survey entries she received from her Instagram audience plus she gives biblical perspective on comparison in hopes to give you perspective on this very real issue in the photography community why we have to stop and fight against it.
Switch On Your Brain by Dr. Caroline Leaf
Comparison. The dreaded C word of life am I right?
We hear that word thrown around so much in motherhood and in our careers.
By definition comparison is: The act of considering similarities and dissimilarities between two things or people.
Most times we are in a constant circle of comparison throughout our days:
Wether it be in the car rider line at school pick up, the grocery store or scrolling social media.
Someone always seems to have something better… or so it seems
The thing I have realized is through many social media breaks over the year or so is that –
When I am hyper focused on anything other than what is in me or what is in the comfort of my home I can lose hours even a week to thoughts that break me down.
One social media post can make me feel as if I am not doing enough in my own life.
I am not working enough.
I don’t have enough followers.
I am not a good enough mom.
I mentoring enough.
I am not showing up online enough.
I am not funny enough.
My client closet is not as good enough.
My house is not big enough.
Gosh you name it – I have thought it and I am not too good to say it either.
We have all done it even if that thought lingers for a second or weeks… No one is immune to comparison – even if they say they are not. The may not dwell on it but it comes across their minds. Admitting you compare yourself to anyone a gross thought- I KNOW.
Keep this in the back of your mind too as we go on: For every single person you compare yourself to there is someone comparing themselves to you.
So before I get into what comparison is doing and has been doing in our motherhood and the photography community… I want state something:
I am not a theologian, bible teacher or saint
I am a broken human being who loves Jesus
and I just want to help others spot the lies and change their mindset because once we start doing this and fighting against this spirit of comparison things will start to shift for us individually as well as a community.
If I ever say anything biblically I encourage you to take what I have said and measure it up to the Bible yourself.
You should never take another humans words as your only foundational truth.
My goal here is to bring you closer to God so that you can use your gifts for his glory vs. being drained by this world that just aids in our comparison.
Looking back I started comparing myself to others as early as 6 years old – in Kindergarten! Yes, as far back as kindergarten I remember being the 3rd wheel friend and the one that was left out – who was not good enough to be a part of the group.
I think for most of us it starts like this or some other way but the seed gets planted fairly young…
Comparison has a way of stealing your joy so that you forget your blessings.
Comparison to others distorts your own reality.
It puts your focus on what is in front of us instead of what is within us
Which in turn minimizes our abundance.
When you compare yourself to others you are allowing envy and jealousy to take root.
Your photography and your job as a mom was just fine until you started peeking over at someone elses answers on the test…
Last week I did a survey on my instagram asking 3 questions but I am going to share question # 1 and a few of the responses:
Can you tell me a time you compared yourself to someone else?
“Honestly, every time I get on Instagram. I compare my editing, how I don’t have a niche, how I would consider myself pretty young to be starting a business (like a pat on the back) and then I come across someone who is a few years younger than me and is so much more successful than I am.“
“I compare myself to these other momtogs like yourself. I sometimes struggle to juggle being an only parent Monday-Friday, my small (not great) business and all the other things household things, meanwhile these other incredible women juggle a business much more intense, full on families with multiple littles, and they’re killing the social media game. I show up but it doesn’t seem to make a difference in those moments.“
“There is a photographer who was supposed to be my mentor then trashed me said I will never be anything and that my photography was awful, so I’m constantly comparing my work to hers and I can’t let go.“
“When I see other photographers constantly posting from new sessions and showing how many sessions they still have to edit. Right now, I’m lucky if I get one or two sessions a month so it’s been rough now comparing and wondering if my work is why I’m not booking.“
“All the momtogs who work & ebf & do all the things with all their kids what seems like all the time. Mommyhood is hard stuff.“
“My guiltiest habit. The current comparing addition: motherhood. I compare myself to my best friend who had her baby 4 weeks behind me and worse than that I find myself comparing our babes.“
The answers poured in and the tears started flowing… because I saw myself in so many of these stories and I knew each person who told their stories were being attacked by the enemy.
So with all of that in mind…
Did you know that the quote “Comparison is the thief of all joy” is not actually in the Bible?
That is a quote by Teddy Rosevelt not Jesus
If you read any of the Bible for any amount of time the issue of comparison is weaved all through the stories found there.
Comparison is not something God wants you to do …. Or is it?
Now hear me out it’s not what you think:
When you compare you photography to another photographer instead of scything to yourself
why is she better than me
Why does she get more likes than me
Why does she get to travel
Why do people sing her praises
Why does she make it look so easy
(Enter your comparison here)
What I want to challenge you to do when these thoughts arise is think these thoughts instead (and I am not trying to play the toxic positivity angle here either)
She is not better than me
She gets more likes because this is a worldly app and this is not a competition with her- it’s a competition with artificial intelligence and it is just a game!
She gets to travel because she works really hard and she goes after her goals
People sing her praises because they see something in her- that does NOT mean I LACK ANYTHING!
She probably struggles just like me but she chooses not the showcase that part of her life and that is OK.
We need to keep in mind that what we see on social media is not always the entire picture of someones life
Did you know that you can only post 100 instagram stories a day?
Each story is 15 seconds long
So that is a wait for it….
A TOTAL OF 25 MINUTES OUT OF SOMEONES DAY!!!!!!
And that is only if they post 100 stories of their actual life in ONE DAY and most people really don’t do that.
How can any of us really gather enough about another person and what their daily life looks like with 25 minutes out of 24 hours a day?
Let that soak in as some cold hard perspective.
So I believe that God created us in his image
God created us all uniquely
God created us each with purpose
HER purpose whoever she may be (I know she is in your mind right now) is not your purpose and her’s is not yours.
Every second you spend worry about what she is doing you are taking away from your own purpose.
A bible verse I have clung to when getting sucked into comparison is this:
Romans 2:11 states that God shows no favoritism – now in this verse he is speaking about His judgment but I know the Bible is the LIVING word and His word is meant to mediate on and to be applied to our lives. From what I know from God favoritism is not in his nature.
Here is what is so heavy on my heart through everything I have read and stories I have been told through countless hours making new friends online and truly listening to their struggles…
The Devil (our enemy as you will hear me refer to him from this day forward) loves what is happening in the photography industry and in our motherhood. Every single time you make a comparison he and his minions get a rise out of it and it sort of fuels his fire to keep screwing with you.
Comparison is a spiritual battle.
Meaning when you are comparing yourself you are sort of for lack of a better word surrounded by this spirit of comparison.
In Ephesians 6:12 it takes about how we do not fight with flesh and blood (other people) but we are fighting against principalities ( an order of angels) against the powers (angelic beings) and the rulers of the darkness of the world (demons) and against spiritual wickedness in high places.
If you believe that and what the Bible says then moving forward when you start to compare remember that is not the spirit of God moving around you making you feel that way and maybe that alone can help you shake it.
I will tell you a good way to battle comparison in the worldly realm though…
The mute button on social media.
It’s a great tool and you should not feel shame using it.
Mute everyone that causes you to lose your joy in turn taking hours, minutes or weeks away from you.
Place anyone on mute who makes you question yourself if even for a week and you will see a shift in how you feel and also in the work you begin to produce.
The beauty of the mute feature is that no one knows you have done it. It’s peace keeping at it’s finest.
Comparison can ruin friendships because you let that root rot long enough it will turn into envy and jealousy which then will sprout up into blooms of gossip and bitterness not only with each other but within yourself.
Remember we are running a race here that really can not be won- in motherhood and in the photography industry that has no finish line + no grand prize because this earth holds no prize. When you make the choice to sink into comparison you are making the choice to BELIEVE the lies that you are telling yourself.
Our prize is in the kingdom and I just hate for anyone to waste their precious time here on earth comparing their beautiful God given life + gift with anyone else – if anything find like minded creatives and put your gifts together and make the world a better place. That is the real way to beat the enemy in this game because we are better together.
The only prize you should be focused on while here on earth is providing for your family while serving your clients doing the best job you can each day while doing something each day that your future self will thank you for.
Meet me here next week because we are going to talk about showing up when you feel like shutting down.
If you enjoyed todays episode please leave a rating or review I love reading them! They mean so much to me and time you leave a review it helps someone else get the opportunity to find the show!
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