“Comparison is the Thief of Joy”

“Comparison IS the thief of joy,”

-Theodore Roosevelt.

Teddy was right.

Over the last month I’ve been going to the gym 5-6 days a week, eating healthy, and avoiding the junk. The scale and my clothes are proof, down 12 pounds. I’m proud of myself. I feel like I’m slowly getting back to myself.

Today, all that effort, self confidence, and inspiration was ALMOST taken from me.

I arrived at the gym around 9am, two kids, a stroller, and a pair of gym leggings that finally fit, barely. I was ready to put in the work. Gym was fairly dead, some of the regulars were there. After a few laps around the track with the girls to warm up I headed to the weights.


There are a few moms at my gym that I see regularly. The moms, like me, who bring the stroller, their last strand of sanity, and an endless supply of puffs. And then there are moms who come alone, with all of their sanity, and lots of time to work through their workout without interruption. I enjoy having my kiddos with me, my sanity is a luxury not a necessity, LOL.

Anyways. I walk up to the hand weights to warm up, I heard two moms having a conversation. I didn’t really pay too much attention until I noticed the running theme. One mom, hands full with kids, was asking lots of questions, sounding genuine. The second mom, no kid in sight, was MORE than happy to talk about herself and never responded with interest in the other mom. You know, those conversations that are totally one-sided and all you can do is roll your eyes hard and say “cool story.” I started to get sucked into this never-ending self promotion and heard what I didn’t want or need to hear. “I’m 8 weeks postpartum.” I was instantly annoyed. I remember being 8 weeks postpartum and at the gym. I remember in the first few weeks after baby I lost almost all the pregnancy weight and was only 11 pounds away from pre-baby weight. And then low milk supply, a cluster feeding baby, and work happened. The gym was not my priority. Here I was 11 MONTHS later and I’m now 50-ish pounds from my pre-baby weight.

I almost fell for it. I almost fell for that little, self sabotaging, voice in all our heads.

“Comparison is the thief of joy,” I reminded myself.

I moved away from their conversation and focused on my workout.

This entire story doesn’t sound like much, but it’s actually a HUGE deal for me. Three or so years ago, before I lost all the weight and found my strength I would have let that one little comparison sabotage all the hard work. I would have slacked off, went home, and ate half a pizza, or lets be real a whole pizza. I would have instantly compared myself to a person I knew nothing about based on a single sentence.

Not anymore. I will not compare myself to others. I also will not judge her for being so boastful. She is allowed to be proud of herself. I know how hard it can be to feel proud of yourself. She is allowed to voice it, and I’m allowed to roll my eyes silently to make myself feel better on the inside. You know we all do it, don’t lie.

Life isn’t a competition, unless it’s your husband or a sibling, then game on.





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