I hear that phrase a lot, either verbally or subsciously. It seems like many of the things that drive people's behaviors is that they truly care what other people think. They may not be quick to admit it, sometimes even to themselves, but it is there, none the less, pushing behavior.
I'm no different and am still working on this to be sure. Part of I'm not good enoughism fit in this somehow.
It screamed at me last night, though. Perhaps women struggle with this even more. I was with a group of them, most of which I had just met but they knew each other well, well enough to say what they were really thinking. We were in a painting like atmosphere...You know one of those hip things right now where the instructor teaches everyone how to paint the same masterpiece. She started by saying that we weren't to compare with one another, that it wasn't about that. I'm not sure if anyone even heard her. How can this even be a rule?
Let me tell you, these pieces of work were special. Did they look identical, no. They each had their artist touch on their canvas, which truly did not make them any worse or better than others, just different. I think I'm appreciating "different" more and more as I get older. What an amazing master we serve that has so much variety in his creation. Not identical, not better or worse, but different. (Remind me that next time I grunt at my love handles or when I see some pics that seem to capture each and everyone of my teeth when I smile really big or my controlling tendency that can cause me anxiety...ok I think I should stop this list.)
When we compare ourselves to others, it usually just brings us down, "Why can't I be more like ____? She is so ____ and I can't get it together enough to do that!" Or perhaps we look for the people that are "worse" than us, just to remind us that, "Well, at least I'm not that bad!"
At any rate, I hope that these woman release and appreciate their art and let go of expectations. I hope I can let go of the fact that I wanted my lines straiter and more time to fix my mistakes. It's different and I want those imperfections to remind me of that every day when I look at it (instead of what I typically do - only look at the imperfections wanting to fix them).