Friday, June 7, 2013

How Are You Like A Real Estate Listing?

Has something on TV every made you really think about something? I mean, think deeply about some topic? On Monday I was watching an interview on the "The View" with author Mika Brzezinski. She wrote the book "Obsessed" which is about her own personal battle with an eating disorder. I found a few things that she shared very interesting. She has battled with Bulimia, a need to over exercise and says that she was obsessed with food. She found support and unlikely common ground with a friend who was battling with obesity. (You can watch the full interview here. It is the last segment of the show) They made a deal to support each other and both get better.

So this got me thinking about assumptions and judgements that we make every day. Who would have thought that 2 friends were battling with the same food problems? They were handling them in opposite ways, but they both had a problem with food. I find that when I'm struggling with a problem, let's use loosing weight as an example, that I am much more comfortable talking to and asking for advice from someone who has taken their own weight loss journey. Why? Well because I know that the other person who has struggled with extra pounds will understand most if not all of the emotions and difficulties that I am encountering. I often feel judged by people who have never had those experiences so I'm less likely to open up about the reasons why I gained weight, or even the reason why I was finally able to lose it. For me it is difficult to talk to someone who can eat whatever they want without gaining weight. My experience has been that those people just don't understand what my life really is like. They live in a different nutrition reality than I do. Does that mean they are bad people? That they don't have any value? No, absolutely not! What this interview made me realize is that maybe I need to be a little more open minded about talking to people. Yes maybe this person or that person seems to be able to eat anything they want, but maybe they are struggling with an eating disorder that I don't know about. Or maybe they are addicted or obsessed to exercise and they are fighting their own health battle because of that. We may have more in common than I ever dreamed possible!

This led me to think about another discussion the other day where a group of us were discussing how damaging to our self image it can be to compare ourselves to others. I believe I've written a little about that before. To truly compare to things you need to have the same information about both items. For example, if you are comparing two homes you are going to want to know the price, the square footage, the number of bedrooms, the number of bathrooms, the lot size, etc. for both homes before you can make an educated comparison. Let's say both homes are the same price and the same square footage. The first home has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. The second home is on one city lot and has a 2 car garage, but you don't know how many bedrooms and bathrooms it has. This is all the information you have. Can you make a fair comparison between the two homes? No. You don't have all the information necessary. If you are looking for a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home then home one sounds like a good deal. But maybe home 2 has 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms and a den. Home 2 could be a much better home for you. The point is that you can't really compare the two homes until you have the facts about both homes. In this case all you can really compare about the homes is the price and the square footage. You really need more information and you probably need to walk through both homes to really make a decision.

Trying to compare two homes without all the facts is just like trying to compare yourself to someone else. Unless you know that person's inner thoughts, feelings, and every single experience they have ever had you cannot compare yourself to them in a fair manner. Usually what we end up doing is comparing our weak areas with someone's strong areas.

We shouldn't judge something or someone without the facts. Truthfully when are you ever going to have all the facts about another person's life? Even if you know where they lived, who they lived with, where they worked and went to school, who they were friends with, what subjects they studied in school, etc, you would never know everything. You would not know the emotional side of each of those experiences and therefore you will never have enough facts to fairly compare yourself to someone else, or to judge them.

So stop trying to. Stop thinking that you aren't good enough because "so and so" never has to exercise to stay fit, or that person can eat a huge slice of pie without gaining weight. You don't know what is going on inside their body and mind. You don't know what they do when you aren't there. Don't judge other people by how they look. But most importantly, Stop Judging Yourself By Looking at Someone Else's Partial Listing!

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