Opinion

Stop comparing yourself: Be happy with what you have

As humans, comparison is an issue with which we constantly struggle. We compare our intelligence, our grades, our possessions, our social standing and our outward appearance. This problem often starts when we are young and follows us throughout our lifetime.

Body image is one of the largest areas in which we often compare ourselves to others, whether it is comparing or coveting another person’s fitness, skills or waist size.

We The Threefold Advocate encourage you to put on an attitude of appreciation rather than comparison. Comparing ourselves to others leads to dissatisfaction and robs us of joy. This starts with the way we talk about ourselves and each other. Rather than making comments about how you wish your grades were as good as the top student in the class, simply compliment that person without jealousy. Evaluate areas of your life that you find yourself comparing, wishing or coveting something else and take time to appreciate and accept those areas for the way they are.

There are many organizations that try to combat comparison specifically for body image. One that many of us have heard of is Dove, which has its “Campaign for Real Beauty.” A lesser known project comes from Australia, where a woman named Sonia Singh is reshaping the way we see ourselves through her Tree Change dolls for children.

Singh noticed that many dolls are made with copious amounts of makeup and over-exaggerated body sizes from lips to waist to legs, and the dolls wear clothes that are unrealistic for the doll’s “age.”

Singh realized that these dolls don’t reflect an accurate representation of girls and therefore perpetuate an unrealistic body image. She gives the dolls “radical make-unders” that more practically represent women, giving impressionable children a better understanding of beauty.

We The Threefold urge you to support and encourage organizations that help us turn toward appreciation rather than comparison, especially when they involve children. We should also serve as role models to those around us, and the best way to do this is to be aware of how we see ourselves and others.