I wanted to do a post about comparison because it has come up many times in my research questionnaire.
Comparison is everywhere with social media and its talked about a lot in terms of how it can be detrimental to self-esteem and worth, particularly if its already low. Instagram is a game and it’s easy to comfuse your ‘points’ (likes) for a scoreboard of achievement/ worth/ success ect.
I know growing up wanting to be a dancer I would compare myself to everyone and always valued myself as worse in one way or another. It’s only over the last few years I have tried to get rid of the comparisons and accept where I am at.
A lot of people spoke about comparing themselves to others in a aerial class or training space and it making them feel awful about themselves. Whether that skill, body, strength or flexibility it is always going to have the risk of negatively effecting us.
Also a lot of people mentioned Instagram and how constantly comparing skills to people they follow can really eat away at their confidence.
I used to think comparison was good because it can motivate improvement but with comparison there’s always a ‘better’ and a ‘worse’ so either rising yourself or ranking someone else below you.
Not one person said ‘I compare myself to others and it feels great’. So the question is what is it actually doing for us?
Why haven’t I achieved as much as them?
Why cant I do X move after X years and they just did it in a couple of weeks?
Why don’t I have as many followers?
Even comparing yourself to yourself. I know its great to watch your progress but what if you can’t do, for example, as many pull ups as you used to? Do you then label yourself as worse? I know I got caught up in this, constantly thinking I was regressing, particularly in lockdown.
Now I am trying to leave the comparison game to the auditions and the funding bodies who get paid to put me up against other people. Looking at others for inspiration instead. We’ve all got something different to give and different ways of getting to places.
Do you compare yourself to others in the aerial world?