Learning to not become "unglued" is quite a journey. I really thought I was starting to have it all figured out, and then I continued reading. Apparently comparing oneself to others is a huge thing that leads to becoming unglued. Not that I didn't see it but I think I have FINALLY admitted to the weight that it has in my emotional mess that I become sometimes. I just have to quote Lysa TerKeurst from Unglued because I couldn't put it into better words.
"The more I compare, the emptier I become. And empty women, oh how we come unglued. Especially when empty settles in the part of our souls where unmet desires restlessly wait. And in that dark corner, desparation churns for what could be but isn't, and what we want but still don't have." (132)
I am not only a counselor through and through, but a student. I love learning. So I was pretty geeked when Lysa even brought in a study that Yale University did on social-comparison. The study found that jealousy occurs when the following three conditions are present:
1. a person receives negative feedback
2. in a domain of life that is important to them and
3. they believe another person is performing successfully in that same domain.
Oh so true. Sad thing is, I've realized that opportunities for comparison never end. In every situation you encounter, you can compare... body size, finances, things, opportunities, feelings, etc. Problem with comparing ourselves to others is that we stop seeing the good things we have and only focus on the good things others have. When we don't see our own good, we eventually start sucking the life out of ourselves and get consumed with negativity. Our brain starts getting used to the negativity and begins to think it over and over and over. Think of it as a dirt road turning into a four lane highway. Once that four lane highway gets established its pretty hard to avoid it because of how "easy" it becomes to travel down. Now I need to start figuring out what situations always detour ME onto a four lane highway and start the hard part of deconstructing it. Demolition can be fun right?
Rachael Kool, professional counselor and normal, everyday adult screw up