Sunday, April 26, 2015

The Cost of Comparison

One of my biggest responsibilities as a health and fitness professional is to find ways to motivate people to make healthy choices. This responsibility can be as surfacey as a reminder about the dangers of sugar, and this burden can go as deep as inspiring a soul-search. It's probably the most rewarding part of my job, and it's what makes my work kingdom-worthy instead of just worldly.

Truth be told, most of my readership and resources come and go from social media like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram. I'm sure you're aware that you have your friends, and then you have your social media friends. And let's be honest, a lot of my inspiration comes from scrolling through pictures on these sites. And that's how I do what I do. But, no matter how many #fitchicks or #chickswholift I follow, I'm constantly barraged by feelings of insecurity.

The question of inspiring others (and how to do it better) has me thinking ... Which of my posts are truly motivating and which of my posts are self-seeking (you know the kind that are simply looking for a high five or compliment)?

#SweatySelfies are the only kind I know how to do.
I hope that the more mature I get (in age and in Christ), the less trivial, self-serving, vain posts I have and the more genuine, wisdom-bearing posts I have. It's you guys that keep me accountable, in the same way I hold my students, clients and class participants accountable. That being said, I feel the need to address one of the most dangerous pitfalls to health and wellness — comparison.

There are two kinds of comparison. One is positive. When comparing yourself with your former self, it helps us to learn from our past and differentiate right from wrong. The other is negative. When comparing yourself with someone else, it causes us to engender either pride or inferiority.

Self-comparison is a legitimate way to become teachable, coachable. For example, as some of my Transformation Challenge participants send in progress photos, I'm comparing their bodies week to week. This kind of comparison reveals how they've grown, succeeded, and exemplified discipline. It allows me to praise them for their progress and encourage them in their weakness.

My burden for this post is to encourage you to stop scrolling through social media and picking out what you want to be like and what you don't. Stop following people who post daily selfies and ask you to love yourself at the same time. That's simply contradictory. My other burden is to ask you what would be motivating for you to keep discovering the beauty and strength inside of you that makes you who you are, unique to all other creatures? How can I help? Which of my Instagram posts are helpful and which are not? 

Your Attitude Reflects Your Attention

I've been told real-life pics remind folks we are only human too.
What are you paying most attention to? Is your constant self-loathing and match-ups to thrice-filtered IG celebs to blame for your feelings of insecurity and discouragement?

We trick our brains into thinking that the more chiseled abs we see, the more we're going to want to diet and exercise. It couldn't be farther from the truth. 

I don't know about you, but pictures of half-naked models do not motivate me to work harder at being healthy. In fact, I've noticed the more time I spend scrolling through pictures of bathroom selfies featuring badonk-a-donk barbies, the more crappy I feel about myself. The more crappy I feel, the less I want to work out, and the more I want to sit on the couch with low-fat ice cream. (I have no idea what this logic is ....)

Your Frustration Reveals Your Fixation

Whatever you concentrate on is what determines your mood and attitude. Your frustration reflects your fixation. 

Fixing your mind on your feelings (reflection of the soul) is dangerous. Feelings are fleeting and often sculpted by our situation. Your mind will deceive your heart, leading to the betrayal of your deepest core principles.  Fixing your eyes on your situation is dangerous too. Instead, feed your mind with the Word of God and His promises. They never fail and are unconditional.

So, this is my real responsibility — to fill you with light, a light that reminds you the cost of comparison and the value of denying the flesh. When you choose something based on feelings, your chances of doing the right thing are 50/50. But when you make a choice with knowledge based on a kingdom-vision, God's faithfulness will sustain you in all things, independent of your feelings and situation.

For more resources on health and wellness, follow me on social media (tabs above), and check out my Services tab. Please like, share and comment below. Thanks!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this post! It actually made me a bit teary eyed. I needed to hear this . :)

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...