[00:00:00] You are listening to Episode 208 of the Peaceful Mind Podcast.
Welcome to the Peaceful Mind Podcast, a place for creating the peace of mind you need to be the best mom you were created by God to be. If you want to bring more balance, more joy, and more peace to your motherhood, this is the place for you. I'm your host, Certified Life Coach at Catholic Mom, Danielle Thienel.
In the name of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, let's get started. Well, hi, everyone. Thanks for joining me. And thanks for making your peace of mind a priority for you, at least today, because this topic that I'm going to talk about is one that is going to be very impactful to your motherhood.
I know that a [00:01:00] lot of you will relate to it. And one of the reasons why I know is that my mom's in my life coaching group, Busy To Balanced, they bring me all the time, the topics that are really important to you busy moms and the ones that are challenging you to be able to have peace of mind.
And this one is no different. In fact, I think I want to put it as one of the top priorities that I would love for you to tackle in your goals if this is something that you suffer with or have a hard time. And what we call it is the comparison trap. So today we are going to talk about how to avoid that inadequacy and defeating feelings that come from when we compare ourselves to other moms in their lives.
And then we kind of put ourselves into a state of despair. And what we [00:02:00] call this is we call it the compare and despair phenomenon. And the reason why I am like tackling this topic and I put it, I'm putting it on the podcast because I first received this comment from one of the groups one of the clients in my group and because of it, I built a training around it and in my, in, in Busy to Balanced I have a whole member portal with lots of resources and all the past calls are there.
And this is where I also include many items that I have created over the last few years that I know it is, that will be extra helpful for you busy moms out there. And so in the group, I have a tab in this online portal that. That is just what bonus trainings that I've given and workshops that I've given on the topics that are important to you.
And so I [00:03:00] did that once my client brought this to my attention I did a training for the group and I, create a workbook that goes along with it. And it's from that, that it. you know, just, it just aches on my heart that not just those who are working with me and in my world would benefit from it. So here I am on the podcast and I hope that it is helpful and impactful to your mom life too.
And so this is what my client said. She said that she is coming from a place of feeling caught in comparing her weaknesses to others strengths. She said, I think this creates feelings of inadequacy and resentment, and it keeps me from developing confidence in myself and for me staying on my own path.
She also said that she thinks it's a barrier to fully experiencing a relationship. With those that she's comparing herself to [00:04:00] and having a better understanding to get out of the comparison trap Would be so helpful and as a result she's hoping that She would have confidence from looking inward instead And so that comment is what helped me come to the training that is provided within my group and that I'm going to just speak about on a surface level for you here today to give you some help around this compare and despair phenomenon and it.
Maybe have it dissipate for you. So let's just start because it's, it's crucial to understand first what we are up against as moms, especially in this. Kind of, you know, constant connectivity with social media. This is just an all too common and often debilitating trap that us [00:05:00] moms can find ourselves into.
And again, I call it the comparison trap. And really what it is, is it's a mental and emotional cycle where we measure our worth, we measure our success, our happiness, against the perceived lives of others. And I want to underscore that word, the perceived lives of others. And then what happens is that this leads to feelings of inadequacy, self doubt, and despair.
And like I mentioned, in the world of social media and constant connection, falling into this trap has become increasingly very easy. And climbing out of it can feel daunting. And that's what I want to help you with today, to have it feel less daunting and to give you the steps and some strategy if you find yourself in the compare and despair phenomenon.
It's important [00:06:00] for you to know that this trap is not, like, it's not like a big hole that's insurmountable for you to get out of. It's it's more like a hurdle and it can be overcome with understanding, with patience and with practice. So to guide you through, we're going to focus on three key steps. Steps of how to get out of the comparison trap.
The first one is we're going to recognize what the common negative thoughts are because this first step of awareness is always key. It's so necessary to the changes that you want in your life. So we want to identify those common thoughts that lead you into the trap. And when you begin to understand what those, those triggers are for you, then you'll be just on your way.
So these thoughts. These [00:07:00] negative thoughts, they will often revolve around self criticism, they will be unfair comparisons, and they will paint a skewed picture of what a real reality is. The next thing that we want to focus on when we are wanting to step out of the comparison trap is to then adopt what we call bridge or ladder thoughts.
This a type of thought that helps transition you directly from negative to positive thoughts because, but, it's the bridge in between those two, because it is really challenging to make a big leap, a big jump from something that you currently believe is true, that is really negative to a, a total positive thought, like that's just not possible sometimes.
So we want to adopt , a [00:08:00] bridge. way of thinking or, or a ladder. It's just like a step moving you closer to that positive thought. And it, they'll help you redirect your focus and it'll provide like a more balanced perspective. It'll help reduce your feelings of despair and it's going to be a gradual improvement of your mindset.
And then we want to embrace those positive self affirming thoughts. We might not be able to go to them right away, but we do want to cultivate a practice on moving ourself towards them. So, this final step in cultivating thoughts that not only keep you out of comparison, but also reinforce your confidence.
It reinforces your self love, and it brings you more joy. , It's Theodore Roosevelt, I believe, who, who said comparison is the thief of joy. So [00:09:00] when you can embrace positive and self affirming thoughts, when we see the, the lives of other moms, other people, we can have more joy.
And so these self affirming thoughts. They'll help celebrate your unique journey with the key word there being unique. We're all different. And we want to acknowledge your strengths, we all have them, even if what we're seeing is, you know, what other people are only putting on their strengths, but, but don't be fooled, all of us have strengths and weaknesses.
This is how God created us. It's, it's how I tell my clients, because we're not robots, we're human beings. And then these self affirming thoughts are going to allow you to appreciate others successes without you feeling diminished. Now, like a lot of things [00:10:00] that I offer here, the change you're looking for to, like, eradicate or at the very, you know, least lessen a little bit if you find yourself feeling inadequate and defeated by comparing yourself with other moms.
I want you to be patient with yourself. I want you to be kind with yourself. I want you to recognize that our, our, we were made like as a society, there's that part of, of that inner desire to belong and to be the same. And so it makes complete sense, right? While we would kind of compare ourselves to others.
But I just want you to know that you're not alone on this journey. Many moms, it is something that we battle with and I just want you to move closer to a life free from the clutches of comparison and be more filled with self [00:11:00] acceptance and of course more peace of mind. So now I want to give you some examples of those thoughts that you might be thinking right now that are bringing on and creating the compare and despair for you that are leading to feelings of inadequacy and defeat.
So the very first step that I, that I mentioned is we want to recognize common negative thoughts and here are some. Of those common thoughts that create compare and despair. Number one, she always looks so put together, and I can barely manage a shower. Two, her children are always so well behaved, mine seem out of control in comparison.
Three, she manages to work and take care of her family, I struggle just to keep the house in order. Four, she's so creative with her kids activities, I just turn on the TV. [00:12:00] Number five, her mom is always, I'm sorry, her home is always spotless. Mine is a constant mess. Okay, so those are five common thoughts.
That are, that would create you feeling inadequate and defeated. Did you relate to any of them? Is that something that you think you feel on a, or think on a regular basis when you look at other moms or see what's happening in their life? Okay, so the next step, if that is, and there are plenty of other thoughts that you may have that create this feeling of inadequacy when you compare yourself to other moms, and I encourage you to take some time and explore what are those common ones for you and So now let's move to the second step where you want to then adopt a bridge or ladder thought you want to transition [00:13:00] from that really like negative one, and you're not quite where you believe the positive one yet.
So then you want something that gives you more of a neutral feeling. And so here's an example to counteract those first five that would bring on more of neutrality and more of like a belief like you, it's something you do believe like right now. So here's some examples. The first one is everyone has their own challenges, even if they're not visible.
Number two, I'm doing the best I can with the resources I have right now. Number three. Each mom's experience is unique, including mine. Number four, it's okay to have tough days. It doesn't mean I'm failing. And number five, every parent has different strengths and I'm still discovering mine. [00:14:00] So can you feel the difference, the little shift in those?
And aren't, aren't those thoughts that you actually can believe, right? Can you believe that we all have our own challenges? Even if we don't know it or see it. Sometimes, do you believe that you are doing your best with what you, the resources that you have? See how these are more easily to be able to, for your brain to grab and to actually believe, but they don't bring like this, this big great feeling, but it's definitely better, like a move up from that whole despair, defeat, inadequacy.
These that I just offered are more neutral. They're more believable for you. And so now, we want to, to work on thinking that way a little bit more. And then eventually, you do want to push yourself [00:15:00] to go to those positive, thoughts. And the reason why is because of the direct correlation with positive thinking, giving you positive results.
So we want to embrace some positive and self affirming thoughts and practice those. And so here is some examples of what this would look like to have a thought that would be supportive to you and would increase the feeling of self love. Number one, she looks great. It's wonderful to see another mom taking care of herself.
Number two, her kids are well behaved, and that's a reflection of her good parenting. It's inspiring. Number three, she's balancing work and family well. It's a reminder that every mom has her own strengths. Number four, I love how creative she is with her kids. I can learn something new from her [00:16:00] approach.
And number five, her home is lovely. It's a reflection of her personality, just like mine is a reflection of mine. Okay. Do you see the difference there? It is a transition that we can all make and all move towards, but you first have to have awareness that this is something that is actually happening for you.
I want to just offer you some kind of like personal reflection prompts to be able for you to take away and apply after this episode for you to just kind of contemplate and think about this week. So let's start with what I, I want you to first, this awareness part is to understand where your [00:17:00] And so that would be you taking a few moments to identify those moments in your life when you will like find yourself or trigger having compare comparison for you.
So think of a recent instance where you found yourself comparing maybe your parenting or your just life in general to another mom's and just describe that situation to you. And then think here, like, what emotions did you feel during that comparison? Was it jealousy? Was it frustration? Was it inadequacy?
And notice for you, what specific aspect of the other mom's life or parenting style triggered those feelings? Because if you can identify that and start to understand your own personal tendency, that is the first step to change so how [00:18:00] often do you find yourself making these comparisons? Is it a lot?
Is there a pattern? Is there a particular time when it happens more frequently? Just growing in this understanding will be so helpful. The next I want you to think about the impact on your life if you were to continue to be Someone who often finds themselves in this compare and despair phenomenon. Like, what effects will it have on your self esteem?
And what about your sense of self worth? Are you questioning that? Because of your focus on somebody else's life and their, and their strengths, instead of focusing on your own, and how have the comparisons that you've made influenced the way you've made decisions? And think of specific examples so you can dive deeper [00:19:00] and just kind of analyze the impact by doing this.
Right? By, by noticing how these thoughts are affecting your relationships with other moms, how it's affecting your family, friends, how it's, like I mentioned before, affecting your self worth. And by analyzing the impact, knowing that if, if there's something, if you don't take action on it, on how you might just keep creating again and again, those feelings of inadequacy and defeat.
And then we've got to shift our perspective, right? That is a theme in all of my coaching is that the changes that we're looking for, it, it first starts in the mind. So what is reality versus the perception that you have? Can you reflect on the possibility that what you're comparing [00:20:00] yourself to might not be the full reality of what's really going on with that person's life?
And I'm just going to tell you right now, we never, none of us get to ever see the full reality. And then let's shift our perspective and let's shift to what your strengths are and how you're rocking it as a mom and how you like what's going on in your world, right? What are those amazing qualities that you possess?
I know they're there. You are a child of God. He created you, you're a marvelous creation, and how have, has your strength already positively impacted your family? And then let's not forget that the greatest shifter in perspective is gratitude. And when you can identify those aspects of your life and your [00:21:00] parenting style that you're grateful for and that you really like.
That is going to be a game changer in helping you shift your perspective and get out of the comparison trap. And then lastly, I want to mention that we've got to develop this new way of keeping that shifted perspective at the forefront. And so we want to develop a new mindset around seeing other mom's lives and what's going on.
So, those kind of neutral thoughts that I offered you today, which ones could you start to use to counteract a negative comparison thought that might be what you just always default to? And can you imagine a day where you would feel completely free from comparison? I want you to visualize that. Take a [00:22:00] few minutes.
What does it look like? And how do you feel when you are staying in your own lane, when you are focusing on your strengths, when you are moving to a place of admiration for other people's strengths, and always keeping in mind that we all as humans both experience the positive and the negative in our lives.
And I would like you to just think of one actionable step that you could take this week to reduce the frequency. of comparison thoughts and to lessen your tendency to compare and despair with other moms. Remember, the journey to overcome the comparison trap is an ongoing one, and it will require patience and self compassion.
But like always, I want to offer you or invite you to work with me [00:23:00] on this topic and many other topics that show up frequently in a busy mom's life and ones that you want to learn how to have more peace. and peace around and more joy in your life in all the areas. I want to thank my client for bringing this to me and also for the great training that was created around it.
And I hope that all you listeners found benefit from that training. And I just want to invite you to come inside. Join Busy To Balanced. So much amazing transformations and growth is going on in there. So thank you listeners so much for being with me today. I hope you have a great rest of your week and until next time, peace be with you always.
Thank you so much for tuning in to today's episode of the Peaceful Mind Podcast. [00:24:00] If you found value in today's episode, I'd be so grateful if you could subscribe and leave a review. It not only supports the podcast, but ensures you don't miss out on future episodes packed with insights and tools. To create peace of mind in your busy mom life.
And if you're of the Catholic faith like me or any Christian mom seeking to feel better in any area of your life and to show up more calm, connected and confident, I can help. Become an empowered mom who knows how to bring about the changes you desire, no matter the circumstances, whether you need one on one guidance to get there, prefer a group coaching program with like minded women or a self study course, I've got you covered. Explore my private one on one packages, join my Busy to Balanced group life coaching program, or delve into my signature course, Divine Time. To find out which path is right for you, let's meet and see what's the best fit. Schedule a free call [00:25:00] with me at daniellethienel.com or send me a direct message on Facebook or Instagram @daniellethienelcoaching. And also, don't forget to get your copy of my book, The Cyclone Mom Method. How to Call On Your God-Given Power To Remain Calm, In Control, and Confident As A Busy Mom. Dive into the digital and bonus audio version when you go to book.daniellethienel.com/new-book . You'll find all the details in the show notes too. Until next time, peace be with you always.