Me: Hi!! My name is The Wordsmith and I tend to compare myself to others in order to boost my pride, resulting in a false awareness of self whether my pride sky rockets or plummets…
(Everybody): Hi Wordsmith!!!!!
Ohhhhhh if only ‘twer that easy. A CA meeting designed to break us of that filthy habit of comparing ourselves to others… a 12 step plan to humility and self esteem… But alas- tisn’t so!! I’m afraid tisn’t so…
Instead of a CA meeting, we get life. Life is kind of like the measuring line at a theme park: “Must be this tall to ride.” The ride, of course, is self confidence manifesting itself via our approach to achieving our dreams, as well as how we carry ourselves in relation to other people. We compare, and compare, and compare…. Somehow being duped into the belief that if we surpass the person next to us, then we have achieved something of significance. We are that little kid who is too short to ride the ride, but then goes home and brags about all of the other preschoolers he might be taller than. None of that matters- he’s still not tall enough to ride the ride at the theme park.
To me this brings 3 primary reasons that we compare..
A) Simply for pride’s sake… we get a rush out of a manufactured sense of superiority
B) As a placebo. We fall short in an area, and so we use that rush to sort of “stand in the gap” as it were
C) To learn… we simply lack the knowledge on how to mature in life properly
Seeing as how A and B are fairly self explanatory (and if they are not, inform me and I shall write an expanded blog on the two), I shall focus upon C. In our quest to learn, we go with what we know- and unfortunately what we instinctively know isn’t always what we OUGHT to know.
Particularly with this topic.
To further the analogy of the child at a theme park… He arrives. He sees that he does not measure up tall enough, and he walks away dejected, yet filled with a perverted sense of determination. So what does he do? Same as you or I would… he looks around for a kid who IS big enough to ride the ride. Begins dressing like him, eating like him, imitating his speech pattern… He compares every facet of his “deficient” life with that of whom he deems successful in order to identify the flaw in himself, and correct it. Ironically this has rather the opposite effect, though he may not see it in the moment.
Comparison to others, as a means of self enhancement, CREATES the flaw rather than removes it.
And when the kid goes back to ride the ride… he STILL won’t be tall enough. Imitation is the APPEARANCE of change- in order to “measure up” and ride the ride, he had to ACTUALLY change. We must ACTUALLY change if we are to ever ride the ride. Reach that goal of contented self confidence that permeates all things…
The force that we often neglect to acknowledge, and that the little boy needs to be taught, is about time. In due time, he will be tall enough. So what should he do? Exercise. Stretch. Eat healthy. Do everything to make him as whole as he can possibly be, so that when the proper time arrives, he is in tip top condition to maximize the opportunity fully.
How does this relate to us? Great segue!! Welcome to what I have affectionately dubbed…
So we have safely arrived at a couple of conclusions…
A) We, ourselves, must actually change if any goals are to be reached
B) Our focus should be on us becoming whole for our own sake
So! Now we are into the heart of Furnace Theory.. it begins with recognition.
If something is not popping off right away, then that means that a longer process must transpire.
It’s simple… but often ignored. And the grander, more extensive, more powerful, more life altering the vision/dream/aspiration- the more time YOU will have to be in the furnace.
The furnace does two things for gold- it purifies it, and it places it in a state of pliability, so that it may be molded.
If you notice that amid your diligence, and growth that the development/manifestation is slow- there’s a good chance that you have huge chunks of gold still being processed in the furnace. Which means that YOU are in the furnace. Whatever you are aiming for cannot be of a caliber that you are not- this is why hesitation, comparisons, distracted diligence, faulty perseverance, and the like can hinder what you’re aiming for. The only way to the other side of anything is straight through.
As you hone yourself to believe and never quit, you enable those dreams in the furnace to completely purify, mold perfectly, and be released. There’s a Star Wars quote that identifies this…
**Yoda lifts a starship out of the swamp with the Force**
Luke: I can’t believe it!
Yoda: And that is why you fail.
Failure to believe is believing to fail.
You haven’t failed or miscalculated if what you’re aiming for has not yet arrived… it’s still in the furnace. And as “small” victories come your way, recognize the furnace process. And know that more is coming, if you would only press on and believe. Don’t compare yourself to others- that sends you in the opposite direction, and halts the process of your gold in the fire- just focus on making yourself whole.
In the end… the whole concept of “measuring up” is a perversion of the main life truth… namely to GROW up. Mature. Be. WHOLE. If you are wholly you, then you cannot be anything else, and if you are wholly you, then you are in the perfect position… because no one in the universe can fill the slot that you were intended to fill, besides you.
Wholeness. For yourself. That’s it, that’s all.