Can I be honest. For just a second. We have all asked the question, “how did she do it?” Usually when someone we know has recently shed a few pounds. A few months ago, I ran into someone I hadn’t seen in a while. The first thing I noticed when I saw her was that she had lost a significant amount of weight. I knew that she had trouble sticking to diets and weight loss plans in the past, so when I saw her I immediately complemented her by saying, “WOW, you look GREAT!” Of course, she brushed it off by saying, “oh thank you… I’ve just been busy.” Busy? Really? That’s it? No secrets. Nothing. She wasn’t giving up any of her secrets.
The girls were about 3 months at the time and I was eagerly looking for a weight loss plan that would help get rid of the baby (babies) weight. I had been trying to eat healthy and work out a few times a week. It seemed as thought the weight was just not coming off. I was a bit insecure in my weight at the time and so I immediately compared my results with hers. I had turned down dessert after dinner, went to workout instead of napping, ate my vegetables, and cut out a lot of my favorite foods. And she lost weight because she had been busy? It wasn’t her answer that frustrated me… but my reaction.
I realized something that day. Many of us, including myself, compare what we go through privately to what we see in others publicly. We see people take fancy vacations while we scrap for change to treat ourselves to a coffee. We see our friends fulfilled in their life while we are in the “wilderness” not knowing what tomorrow holds. We see others fall in love and get married while we are obedient day after day, waiting for God to bring “the one” our way. It’s frustrating and disheartening at times and it just seems unfair. But comparing what people are willing to admit publicly to what we go through behind closed doors will get us into a lot of trouble. It can be quite dangerous actually. If we are not careful, we can get caught up in a vicious cycle of comparing our lives with others. What we see of their lives is only a small piece of a bigger picture. Just because they don’t tell the world that they have been eating grilled chicken and celery everyday doesn’t mean they have lost weight “because they have been busy.” 🙂 We don’t know what people have endured in order to be where they are or what they are currently going through to have what they have.
Comparing leaves us feeling discontent, ungrateful, and empty. When we are discontent we miss out on the day to day blessings that God has for us. Let’s not fall into a habit of comparing. Instead, let’s be people who embrace where we are in our journey while encouraging others in theirs! Your journey is your journey and is not made to be lived out by anyone else. So when we are tempted to ask, “How did she do it?” let’s assume she has done it simply…. by the grace of God!