Stop comparing yourself to others! But urgh, why is it so hard..?
Comparing yourself or your child to others will steal your happiness. Yep, that’s right. It will rock right up in its woolly balaclava and snatch the very joy from your delicate little palms.
So today I’m thinking about why we do this to ourselves and how we can just flaming well stop it! Because we should just concentrate on being fabulous us, have faith in our parenting skills and be proud of our gorgeous little bundles of craziness in all their ratty, snotty glory.
Hell yeah mummies, let’s crack this.
Should you stop comparing yourself to others completely?
OK, I’ll admit it. Just like the big guy with the twiddly moustache from the advert says, a bit of comparison can be a useful thing.
I mean let’s face it, none of us are born knowing how to mum. We learn and take our inspiration from others, to some extent. I know I’m often taking a sneak peek at how other mums do things and thinking bloody brilliant, I’m stealing that snazzy little trick.
And that sort of comparison is OK, as long as it makes you happy, and the person you’re copying isn’t some sort of child-hating Cruella de Vil. But…
When to stop comparing yourself to others
But when comparison gets out of hand and makes us feel a bit crap about life, that’s when we need to call time on that shifty little sucker.
For example, I think every single thing Little B does is marvellous and extraordinary, when it’s just us guys together. The tiniest of things, like him pointing out bananas in the fruit aisle in Tesco makes my heart sing with joy.
I’m punching the air like the kid’s a genius. Whoop whoop – I created that! (You may catch me doing a victory dance in a reasonably priced supermarket near you. Just smile politely and move on…)
Don’t compare your meerkat!
And then I do something loopy like take him to a toddler group. Suddenly I despair that the other kids are doing all sorts of things I’ve never even thought of teaching my little pickle. And of course, I’m not going to be sad with him.
Mum guilt alert – you know it – it will all be my fault.
I’ll be thinking my god, why haven’t I bought him a plastic food picnic set? What kind of mother am I?! Now he’ll never be able to pronounce croissant, or choose himself a can of scrumptious spam.
What if he never makes it to the Master Chef final..?
Or hell, why haven’t I shown him how to use a plastic telephone circa 1972? How will he ever succeed in the world of telecommunications now? Urgh, go back to mum school.
Definitely stop comparing yourself to others on social media!
And social media isn’t doing us any favours. I’m sure our generations will suffer from this comparing malarkey more than ever.
It’s like we’re constantly bombarded with snap shots of other people’s lives. They’re under our noses, in our pockets, screaming and twerking right in our exhausted faces.
If we don’t keep a handle on it, our lives can easily spiral into a world of comparing and being compared. What starts out as a leisurely scroll through Facebook, can end up in you wondering if you really measure up.
No matter how contented you are with your own little patch, there’s always some poser ready to flaunt their Marie Kondo’d house and perfectly airbrushed face, or their kids nicely lined up like they’re from The Sound of bloody Music.
We don’t see the off screen bit where there’s a massive pile of stinky washing or their tots are having a tantrum because they’re not allowed to put Rice Krispies up their nose.
So why are we comparing ourselves to others?
Do we compare ourselves because we’re worried about how we size up? Are we concerned other people are looking at us and thinking we’re not good enough?
Well let’s face it ladies, anyone who looks at us or our flipping delightful offspring and doesn’t think we’re the best thing since sliced bread is just not our kinda people. We don’t need to belong with them. We don’t need ourselves or our children to be the same.
Heck, we wouldn’t even want them to be!
Measuring up and fitting in is an ancient survival instinct, helping us to mimic and cling to the rat race so we didn’t get eaten by bears, or whatever. Well, screw that outdated nonsense. I’ve not seen a great deal of bear action around these parts.
Are other mums judging us?
Besides, in reality, most other mums are too busy worrying about their own stuff to notice what we’re up to.
They’re juggling and mumming and trying to clean lentil soup off the radiator. They’re panicking about whether they sent that email at work or whether there’s enough gravy in for tea.
And occasionally they’re brushing their fringe and shoving all the lego out of the way so they can take a quick photo for Facebook. Because we’re all just human.
So I don’t know about you, but I’m going to slam my foot on the comparison brakes, and scream out loud “stop comparing yourself to others!” (please!).
I mean, let’s think about this in other aspects of life. If we all went around comparing ourselves to others instead of just getting on with it, it would be chaos central.
Release your inner Mo Farah!
For example, Imagine you’re Mo Farah trying to win a race, and instead of gritting your teeth and going for it, believing in yourself, you’re busy looking over your shoulder checking out the competition.
Are they faster than me? Are they wearing better shorts? You’d soon be wobbling over and face-planting that tarmac.
All this comparison a just a tad pointless
Would you swap a single hair on your child’s head for someone else’s? Most days, I’m guessing not. So the comparison thing is all a bit pointless in the end.
“Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day,” as Shakespeare would say? No thank you bard, we’re not comparing our meerkats here. So kindly bugger off.
So next time I get a bit panicky about how I’m measuring up as a mother, I’ll ask myself this.
Is my kiddy-wink loved, cared for and as happy as this infamous Larry?
Would I change the tiniest thing about him.
And am I doing my god damned best (even if Sheila makes better unicorn cupcakes and Nelly’s kid can recite the alphabet backwards standing on his head?)
So chill, woman. Stop with this pointless comparison lark. You’re an incredible creature, your kid’s a legend and you’ve absolutely one hundred percent got this.
Now come on mummies, who’s with me?
Over to You
So ladies and gents, you know what to do. If you’re with me, scroll down and stick a hell yes in the comments box. Us mummies of the world need your love. And as always, I love hearing your thoughts. So what little things do you find yourself comparing, that you just need to nip in the bud?
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Ooh, so you’re going to stop comparing yourself to others, and you’re still keen. I love that! Why not try out some of my other posts:
The Brazen Mummy Quiz will always be one of my favourites, if you like a good laugh.
Or how about the one where I apologise to my mother for a lifetime of selfishness? And the photos are pretty funny!
If you LOVED this motivational kick, you can’t miss my post on beating overwhelm. Read that too, and you’ll be on fire today, Mumma!
Plus there’s always my Facebook page for daily banter. Hop on over and press like!
Photo Credits –
Featured image – lady at mirror – from Pixabay, via Pexels
Twins, Tantrums and Cold Coffee