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The Day I Stopped Being Jealous of (and Started Supporting) Women

September 27, 2014


Women are inclined socially at a young age to be pinned against one another. History proves this and the future looks to be the same; especially with social media and bullying in schools. As my blog grows and as I grow as person, I feel it is my responsibility to try and make the world a better place. How philosophical of me, right? However, if there is one issue I am just as passionate about like I am with fitness, it is women empowerment. 

I decided to break this post down into two different parts. Today I want to write about jealously and learning to love our physical appearance. I am not a jealous person.  

It has not always been like though. When I was growing up, every girl was prettier than me. Every girl was cooler. Every girl was more fashionable. Every girl was funnier. Every girl was smarter. I did not have any self confidence in myself. I hid behind my abnormally large sweaters, pants, and glasses. I would get teased about my looks, especially by girls. It depleted any ounce of confidence that I was able to develop. 

When I began high school, that is when I started to experiment with makeup, styling my hair, and putting together pretty outfits. My fashion choices were not standard for my high school though. This resulted in intense bullying; not just because of my fashion choices and looks-- but my weight.

Because my childhood was plagued with so much pain from my peers and a family member, I developed a sense of compassion and empathy for others much sooner than people my age. Unfortunately, that compassion did not eliminate the jealously that was living inside of me and often dominated my emotions. 

I constantly tried to change who I was -- that happens to a lot us, especially during high school. It is undoubtedly an exhausting growing period for us all. I was no exception, and going through this took its toll on me. Because I did not like what I looked like... it made me hate who I was as a person. Consequently I would take my anger out on people I secretly admired. My insecurities were taken out on women I thought were prettier and better than me. 

Whether one admits it or not, it is absolutely true that most of the time when someone is putting down another person or "hating" on them for something petty and juvenile, it is because they are  insecure and trying to feel better about themselves.

As I started to grow up, I realized that jealously was such a deeply negative, disgusting emotion that I wanted no part of. It brings out the worst in people and because so many people irrationally react to it, the world can be such a bad place.


There would be days when I would surprisingly have an ounce of self confidence, yet it could easily be shot by seeing seeing a woman who I thought was prettier than me. I constantly compared myself to other women. I would want to put them down so I could try and feel better. I would want to do whatever it took to make myself look more attractive than the woman next to me. I always tried to change my looks, even going as far as purchasing brown contacts because I thought they were prettier than my natural blue.

Then I finally thought; who the hell wants to live this way? Who wants to live their life coveting, wishing, and yearning to be someone else? 

But the question was: how do I change? 

The change for me was a process. I had to teach myself not to be jealous of other women. There was no anti-jealously pill that a doctor could prescribe, there is no amount of makeup or clothes that make the jealously and insecurities go away, and there is no man in the world who can make me love myself for who I am. I am the only person who has control. 

First, I wanted to love myself physically; which I knew was going to be a lot of work. 

I have large blue eyes and I think they are pretty. I do not have dark brown eyes like I always wanted and I never will. I need to accept that and move on.. I did. I always wanted large lips; my upper lip is not as large as I wish it was. Because I refuse to get injections, I have just found ways to accentuate them. I have a gap in between my two front teeth that three years of braces did not fix-- as it came back. It used to bother me so much that I would never smile with my teeth showing. I desperately wanted it fixed, but did not have the opportunity because of the cost. OK, fine. It's quirky, unique, and now I think it's cute. I can finally sat I am thankful that years ago I did not get it fixed because now I really enjoy having it! 

Next, I always wanted long, lean, and thin legs. However, standing in at 5'3 1/2 made that nearly impossible. Then to add in years of gymnastics, track, cheerleading, and dance, that just made my "thin legs dream" even more unattainable. Thankfully, I loved my sports more so I got over that. 

My long and lean dream continued with my arms. I wanted them rail thin when I was a teenager, but I lift weights far too much for that. If I wanted to obtain that look for my arms, I would have to give up one of my most favorite hobbies. That was in no way happening, so I moved on. 

Lastly, my butt. This made me so insecure as a child that it used to drive me crazy. I would want all of my shirts to be so baggy on me that they would completely cover my butt and hide it. I was 10 years old wearing XXL men's t-shirts. Now I love it. It is one of my favorite physical parts of me and I work hard to maintain and keep it toned and muscular. 

It was important for me to put all of my physical issues on the surface. I listed out nearly everything I detested about my looks. I did this because in order for me to change, I first had to acknowledge and be brutally honest with myself. 

There are a lot about our looks that we cannot control. Initially to me, that was heartbreaking. When I realized that a lot of the physical traits I so desperately wanted to have were impossible attain, I knew that spending my life yearning for them was an utter waste of time and energy. 

Now I see this "revelation" of mine as humbling. It 's beautifully, humbling to me. Through this journey,  I learned to love myself despite my self proclaimed flaws. There are some physical traits that are me, and cannot be changed no matter what I do. In that case I can either spend my life hating them or change the way I view them. I chose the latter. 


As I worked on this and consistently took the time to change the way I view myself, I did not realize the freeing and positive outlook and energy it would being to my heart, soul, mind, and the way I saw other women. 

I thought accepting and being content with my looks with be the best experience, but freeing myself of jealously and comparison changed my life more than I ever thought possible. I will continue on with that later on in the week. 

21 comments

  1. Amazing post! The journey to self acceptance is a tough one and I truly agree that the only way we can accept ourselves is to stop comparing to others.

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  2. Such a lovely post on this lovely Saturday! Comparison kills the uniqueness! So true :)

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  3. Very well said! The Bible says it is not wise to compare ourselves among ourselves. He knew it would breed jealousy and self hate. I'm so glad you were able to change. This post really encourages me to examine the way I have been hating on myself. Thanks :)

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  4. i hate that women compare themselves so much that they end up loathing how they look. i'm glad that i was never like that and although i would have liked for things to be different, i quickly learned that all that self-loathing is so destructive and for real, NO ONE has time for that. like you, i will never have waif, thin legs with that gap. my quads are way too big but they are strong and defined and i'm proud of how they look.

    i live with a different kind of fear - how my daughter will grow up. will she fall into that trap? will she pick herself apart that is so common among growing girls? it's why i work so hard to teach her about herself; about healthy eating and exercise and how good it is for the body. i expose her to different things and i never reference anything as "stuff for girls" or "stuff for boys"; i always tell her that it's what she likes that matters most; that there will be times that others won't like what she's wearing or doing but that's ok because only her opinion matters most.

    thanks for such an open and honest post! have a great weekend!

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  5. I think this is a great post. Often times women do get jealous of other women. In general people seem to want what they don't have and want there life to look like other peoples. Inevitably, there are some things that we are born with. The color of our eyes and so on. My legs will never be skinny either. My grandma was a dancer and had very muscular legs. I inherited that trait from her. It did bother me but now it reminds me of her. Of course, if you are not happy with yourself and can make changes then I think it is important to reach for the person you want to be. Not to compete with others but sometimes changes are necessary to be happy with yourself. I'm glad that you have found happiness with yourself.

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  6. I struggle with jealousy and comparing myself to other people. Thank you so much for writing this post girl, as usual beautifully well written and eye opening.

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  7. I think we all struggle with this at some point, and I think it's awesome that you recognized it and changed. I still struggle with this at age 29! I love that you're writing this series. Can't wait to read more!

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  8. Love this post! And girl, you are my tooth gap idol! I have one too and it often bothers me in photos but I'm like, "If Liz can rock it, I can rock it!" :) Have a great Monday!

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  9. Inspiring post - Need to embrace each other, not drag each other down. You are starting a movement here - whether you realize it or not.

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  10. Great post, as usual. Hits home for sure. I have battled with insecurities my whole life and continue to do so on a daily basis. Agree with Kathy @ Vodka and Soda, now that I am a mom to 2 little girls, its a huge fear of mine to try and teach them to be ok with themselves no matter what. How can I teach them if I cant teach myself.

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  11. You are such an inspiration! As always your honesty in this post is so amazing and I think we all appreciate it and we can all relate to this as women. I still struggle with jealousy to an extent, but I feel the older I get and the less I focus on what others are doing the easier it's getting for me to just get over it and move on. Ps. My husband has a gap in his teeth too and it's one of the features I feel makes him him, same goes for you! Gorgeous!

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  12. I found your blog when I saw a retweet on Ava Cowan's twitter feed. I just want to say that I find you very inspiring and a beautiful person, outside as well as in. I can relate to many things that you post and am going through your blog and reading all your posts. This one in particular struck me as I am currently having issues with the whole jealous-issue. It's a pointless emotion but sometimes I can't help myself, probably because I have terribly low self-esteem....I guess it's not only important that we help build one another up but also try to build ourselves up too.
    Anyways - keep up the great work. I am really enjoying reading your posts.

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  13. Blogger just ate my first comment. GRRRR!!!

    What I said was basically this: it is so important for women to empower and support each other, not bring each other down or hate for no reason.

    I do struggle with comparison to others but mainly in relation to talents, accomplishments, and skills because I feel like I don't even come close. With my looks, that's something I'm working on but at this point, I've just accepted most of my flaws and I'm fine with them. I'm working on changing what I can for my own happiness but there are some parts that will never be different. And that's okay.

    As a mother, I'm trying really hard to instill in my daughter confidence and security and to ignore those who say bad things because their opinions don't matter. I'm also teaching her to not be mean, and being nice is the single most important thing she can be to others.

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  14. This is pure genius! I can't wait to read the rest!

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  15. This is such a hard and important lesson to learn. It is so hard not to compare ourselves to others but usually the things we don't like about ourselves is what people love about is. Glad you finally embrace the things that make you unique.

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  16. YES! We're so much more critical of ourselves than others are. While we may think someone else is prettier, smarter, etc... they could be thinking the same thing about us! We're all different... THAT is what makes us worth something! :)

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  17. Jealousy is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. Simply love this post! Empowering one another and stand by each other is really a liberating feeling!

    Bless,
    herweightlossdiary.blogspot.com

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  18. Yes Yes Yes. Love everything about this!!!

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  19. I laughed about the front teeth, upper lip, legs and butt because those were all my things I wanted to change. Now, like you, I like the space in my teeth. I still want fuller lips but not getting injections either! I embrace my butt - but sometimes I still think my legs are like tree trunks rather than legs. LOL

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