Do you compare yourself to others? Who doesn’t! We’re conditioned by glossy magazines, advertising, fashion models, sports, and high pressure workplaces to compare ourselves to others… and to figure out where we stand on the Ladder of Status. The trap comes when our tribal brain sees someone who is better at something we value than we are. The subconscious then generalizes and may conclude: “Oh, she’s better at THAT… therefore she’s better than me.”
It’s hard to form mutual loving connection when you’re competing. Evaluating yourself compared to others creates tension. When we start to feel “less than” people around us, we want to HIDE. And when we are “forced” to be around others, we can feel uptight and vigilant.
If you want to break out of your shell and create real warmth and caring in your life, a new perspective can go a long way to transforming how you feel and how you walk in the world!
In the old paradigm, I have to be the prettiest, smartest, funniest, and most talented… and make the most money… to deserve any love or attention. I have to be at the top of the heap for everything, or I feel like crap.
A lot of us are taught that game as children. You could have just won the Nobel Prize and someone else makes everyone laugh… and you feel like you’re not good enough. We’re taught to look at life that way, as a competition, and it can get in the way of being close and loving.
In our emotional world, it is not really about who is the smartest, prettiest, or who has the quickest comeback. When you’re feeling down, or having a bad day, you’re looking for the person who has some compassion and kindness to spare. Change your Life Rules and you can walk as a “winner” just by being someone who notices other people and says “Hi” with a kind smile.
You don’t have to be funny. You don’t have to be gorgeous. You don’t have to this tall or this skinny or that… PERFECT. Sometimes just being kind is enough to connect and have the other person feel, “Oh my goodness, thank you so much.”
In a world where so many people are upset and not noticing each other, who doesn’t want a kind person around?
So many of us are caught up in our own stories, and evaluating ourselves and others, we’re not even present with each other. We’re not really there with our friends. Some EFT tapping and practice can change this pattern and create new and beautiful patterns in our lives!
Karate Chop: Even though I thought I had to be the best at everything to be worth anything, what if that was just a game I was playing and I don’t need to play it anymore.
Even though they all taught me to play this game, and I put so much energy into it… I was determined to win. But this game just causes stress… there’s always someone new who might be better at something else.
Even though I invested a lot of time into this game, I choose to find a better, more loving way to connect with people.
Top of the Head: What if I just accepted me for who I am?
Eyebrow: What if I decided that was good enough?
Side of the Eye: What if I could just be present with the people I’m with…
Under the Eye: And really enjoy them…
Under the Nose: Rather than competing with them all the time?
Chin: That might bring a deeper connection.
Collarbone: And that’s what I wanted all along anyway!
Under the Arm: I was trying to earn it by being the best.
Top of the Head: What if I could have it by being me?
We’ve been talking a lot about Breaking Out of Your Shell. The truth is, we’re all insecure in our own ways. Being ourselves is not the type of thing that we were taught back in seventh grade or when we were a wee tyke.
People that are angry, controlling and dominating… they’ve got their own stuff. For them to feel safe in their world, they have to control everything in their “egg,” and they try to make their egg as big as possible without it cracking all to pieces.
When everything’s a competition, there isn’t room for warm connection. When everything’s a competition, it’s hard to relax or remember that other people feel insecure and uncertain inside as well.
Karate Chop: Even though I thought I was the only one who felt uncertain, they sure pretend to be all secure and confident, maybe we’re all humans looking for connection?
Even though I can get caught up in the contest and winning, I will miss the love and warmth available in this moment by trying and trying and trying to be good enough to deserve it.
Even though they all look so certain… or at least that’s the way I see them from inside my shell… what if we’re all insecure in our own ways and I can reach out with new confidence now?
Top of the Head: What if we’re all insecure in our own ways?
Eyebrow: I thought it was just me!
Side of the Eye: It feels so lonely in my shell.
Under the Eye: But I do have positive attributes.
Under the Nose: I’m not exactly “rotten to my core.”
Chin: I can be surprisingly kind.
Collarbone: And there’s a caring bone in my body… maybe even two.
Under the Arm: I choose to love and accept myself a bit more right now.
Top of the Head: I’ve even decided to honor my OWN value.
Did you find this helpful? Were any of the statements particularly powerful for you? We’d like to hear how.
Our mission is to help people transform their emotional world. We can live in a world of competition… for status, for money, for energy… even for love. That world does exist right here on earth.
There is also a world where people want to co-create. Where individuals and groups recognize the value in safety and respect… and freedom… and they invest heart and soul in cultivating these qualities. One such place is our Thriving Now Team. There are other tribes doing this across the world, too.
Making the transition from one set of Life Rules based on competition and perfectionism… to Life Freedom… well, for many of us it takes some practical exercises, lots of tapping on the fears that come up, and experienced guidance on how to open up while feeling safe and confident. If that sounds like what you are looking for, we’d recommend getting our Breaking Out of Your Shell program as a next step.
Originally published November 30, 2011