Comparison is well and truly the thief of joy.
How many times have you felt good about yourself only to come across a photo, status, or story on social media where someone else seems to have it better and suddenly the happy feelings fade?
How many times have you felt vulnerable and insecure, come across reminders of other people’s successes, and felt awful about yourself to the point of self-hatred and anger?
But here’s the thing:
When you compare yourself to someone else, you dishonor the kind, compassionate, determined, and wonderful person you are.
This is why it’s so important to learn how to deal with the downward spiral of negativity that arises when you feel inadequate, insecure, and lacking in comparison to someone else.
Here are some important tips to help you defeat such berating self-talk.
1. Manage your thoughts and voice positive affirmations to yourself.
When you’re inspired by someone else, keep your thoughts restricted to, “Masha Allah, she’s good at this.” Don’t let your inner monologue change to, “She’s better than me.” Or “I’m not as good as her.”
Allow yourself to be inspired by others, but continue to focus on your own goals.
Make a daily habit of voicing the following positive affirmations to yourself:
- Someone else’s success doesn’t mean the lack of my own.
- I am strong, capable, and absolutely good enough.
- I have overcome so much and I will continue to move forward.
- There’s already one of that person I’m envying in the world, so copying them is pointless. But there’s only one of ME so I’m going to continue being MYSELF.
- I have the tools I need to succeed in all areas of my life.
2. Control the negative self-talk that berates and criticizes you.
Speak to yourself as you would to a young child or someone dear to you. Develop a secure self-concept based on who you ARE, not on what you DO or how well you do it.
When you sit down to reflect, you’ll understand that you only compare your life to others in areas you find yourself lacking in. Learn to let go of the limiting beliefs holding you back and know that you’re capable of all the greatness in the world, if you allow yourself.
Are you stuck in an unhappy place? Do you want to learn how to move on and grow to become better in every way?
3. Develop a grateful mindset.
Voice out loud, every night before sleeping, 5 things you are grateful for.
Truly feel that you are in front of Allah and saying, “ya Allah, alhumdulillah for my family. Alhumdulillah for my home. Alhumdulillah for sleeping on a full stomach. Alhumdulillah for sound health. Alhumdulillah for a sane mind.”
You can be as specific or as general as you want, but doing this exercise every day will direct your thoughts away from the negativity and toward all the blessings in your life.
4. Be positive about the future.
If you’re going through a low period, strive to have positive expectations about the future. Be optimistic.
Just because things are rough right now, it doesn’t mean they’ll always be that way. Think back to how far you’ve come, the challenges you’ve tackled along the way, and be proud of yourself for doing so well!
5. Divert your attention to the Provider of all blessings.
When you’re envying someone for their looks, happiness, wealth, or success – remind yourself of the One who actually gave it to them. Pray that Allah (swt) increases that person in Khayr and grants you that blessing as well, in whatever capacity is actually good for you.
This Dua is so comprehensive for being content with your blessings, asking for Barakah in them, and also beseeching Allah (swt) to replace whatever is missing from your life with something worthy and good.
اللَّهُمَّ قَنَّعْنِي بِمَا رَزَقْتَنِي، وَبَارِكْ لِي فِيهِ، وَاخْلُفْ عَلَيَّ كُلَّ غَائِبَةٍ بِخَيْرٍ
O Allah, make me content with the provision You have given me and bless me in it and appoint good for me in every thing which I do not have. [Al-Adab Al-Mufrad]
I hope you benefited from these tips! How do you deal with negative thoughts? Leave a comment below to let me know!
Khadija Khan is a wife, mommy, certified life coach, and Islamic counselor. She is passionate about helping Muslim women reach their goals in all areas of life. She writes about things like Islamic spirituality, relationships, parenting, and personal development. Continue Reading…