Don’t let comparison steal your joy…

Comparisons are designed to make someone fall short….God made us each perfect in our own way…He never meant for us to compare ourselves to one another and point out how one is more perfect than the other.”

Two of my all time favourite quotes and the ones that are closest to my heart. I have always been bad at comparing myself to others and falling short in my eyes. When I was younger I was always the tallest person in every single grade. I was always back row during school pictures, always picked first for basketball teams (until they figured out I was for the most part uncoordinated, then it quickly became last!). I wore glasses, I loved to read, I never could find clothes that fit my properly because of my height…and compared to everyone else I was kinda dorky.

As an adult those feelings are still there….and with facebook and pinterest and other forms of social media becoming a part of our daily life, making comparisons is even easier than it was before. It’s so easy to feel like I am not baking enough, photographing good enough, blogging enough, my facebook updates aren’t funny enough, my time with Luca isn’t as jam-packed with kids activities as it should be etc.

With photography I feel like I post a session I am proud of, to only see  one that much better a few minutes later and get discouraged all over again. Just a few nights ago it happened again….it was one of those bad days to begin with, and I hop on facebook for my nightly creeping session and just got discouraged some more. Others had things I didn’t have, were in a different place in life than I was, seemed more successful than I was, and it left me wondering what I was doing wrong. I didn’t know how to get rid of those feelings. So I prayed. It’s the only thing I know that works!  I kept it simple “help me appreciate where I am’

This morning in the shower it hit me. (Why do all good ideas start in the bath/shower? It’s like this magical place of inspiration! well for me anyways!)

I realized I am comparing myself to the wrong people. I was focusing on the wrong things. I am unique, both in who I am as a person, and in where I am in life. I am following a plan that has been laid out for me that no one else can follow. That can compare to no one elses. It hit me like a punch in the gut….who am I to get jealous over someone being more succesful than me when there are single mothers with no family to support them? When there are Dad’s out there without work who don’t know how to support their family? When there are girls living in different cultures who don’t get to marry their significant other because another has already been chosen for them? When there are couples who can’t have children of their own, and those who can but are dealing with the sickness or even death of a child? When there are millions of people around the world who don’t have the basic requirements of life that I take for granted on a daily basis…like the hot showers that so readily bring inspiration and ideas?!?

Suddenly I went from discouraged, envious, frustrated and let down to a sense of OVERWHELMING gratitude and awe. A feeling of “what did I ever do to deserve the life I lead?” He made me just stop and “be still” and truly realize how FULL my life really is.

We are all created perfectly unique. Comparing ourselves and our lives to others is useless and really does steal your joy….I realize I need to embrace me, which trust me is sooooo hard, and realize how much I have in my life. I need to stop looking sideways and start focusing on the path that lies ahead. Look forward to the path that’s already laid out. The path that no one can follow but me.

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  1. Stacey says:

    If I could I would live in the shower, I’m absolutely brilliant in there. Its amazing how the simple act cleansing can help bring you back to center and allow you to remember how wonderful your life is. We totally should work on creating a super awesome waterproof laptop.

  2. Tacey says:

    Justine…cheers to your ‘a-ha’ moment….I know it’s hard…believe me, I KNOW it’s hard….but the less you compare, or even LOOK for that matter, the better off we are as artists….and mothers, and wives. Believe in your strengths…OWN them, FOCUS on them….after that, everything will become incredibly ‘easy’. Remember, what you focus on expands…xoxox Love you girl.

  3. Justine Russo says:

    hahahaha that would be amazing! I would get so much work done…that or just sit on facebook.haha.

  4. Justine Russo says:

    Tacey I love you too! I love your outlook on life!! I wish I still lived closer…somedays I just need some Tacey!

  5. Tiffany says:

    Wow Justine, I wholeheatedly agree with you….and it is funny because I had a similar “a-ha” moment on a run very recently! It sure makes you able to refocus on what matters to you and in turn makes you a happier person (at least that is what I feel!) Keep up the amazing posts!

    Tiff

  6. Justine Russo says:

    Thanks Tiffany!!! And thanks for all the running inspiration!!! Gonna try to keep it up so we can run together! If not we definitely have to do coffee atleast!! :)

  7. Tiffany says:

    Ooooo yes yes yes to both! Lets plan something, we always talk about it so lets make it happen :)

  8. Justine Russo says:

    haha sounds like a plan! :)

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