What drives you to compare your body
Do you compare your body to others?
If you often feel the urge to compare your body, you aren’t alone.
But body comparisons rarely lead to better body confidence.
So if this is the case, why do we do it?
Well, in this post, I’m sharing what drives you to compare your body, and how you can use this knowledge to improve body image.
Watch or read below:
Social media makes it easy to compare your body
It’s never been easier to make comparisons in the age social media. Whether you compare your body to that of a celebrity or a friend on social media, it’s not something that leaves you feeling good.
Despite the fact that comparison doesn’t make us feel better, it can still be a difficult habit to break.
So I’m sharing what drives you to compare your body (or other aspects of yourself or your life), and how you can use this knowledge to improve body image.
Why you compare your body
Rest assured that comparison is natural for human beings! It helps you to evaluate your place in the world.
The desire to compare is a primitive one that goes back to a time when we lived in tribes. Being part of a tribe was vital for survival, so being cast away from the tribe was very serious.
Comparison stems from our desire to fit in with our ‘tribe’. Being different from the tribe was one way that you could be cast out from it.
Comparison helped our ancestors do what they needed to do to conform to the norms of the tribe.
How we compare today
Today, we still essentially do the same thing. We compare ourselves and our lives to see if we are living up to what our ‘tribe’ (or society) expects from us.
The main difference is that if people don’t like you or what you look like, the consequences are not so dire! You’re not going to be cast out of the tribe and starve!
Yet this drive to compare is hard-wired within us and so we compare our jobs, families, status and appearance.
Just knowing that comparison is part of your survival strategy can be helpful when you compare your body to someone else and feel bad.
When you’re in survival mode, you’re using the areas of your brain that trigger the flight or fight response. This means that you’re less capable of rational thought.
Dealing with comparison
So what can you do when you compare your body and feel ashamed or anxious? I’ve got three steps for you to try:
Firstly, when you compare your body, remind yourself that your inner cave woman or man is trying to keep you safe. Tell yourself that you are safe regardless of what your body looks like.
Then, begin to engage your more rational, human brain by reminding yourself that there’s more to you than your looks. You might find it useful to make a list of all the things that others admire you for, whether that’s your personality, skills or other attributes.
Finally, create a mantra you can use when comparison kicks in that you can repeat out loud or in your head.
For example, you might say:
“My brain has gone into comparison mode again. It’s just trying to keep me safe. But there’s nothing for me to fear. I am more than a body and I don’t need to compare myself to anyone.”
Take some time to think of something that works for you.
I’d love to know if you compare your body and how it makes you feel. Please leave me a comment below.