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Tuesday, July 14, 2009


'What am I, 12?'

I ask myself that every now and again.

Because I feel that way every now and again.

And I think I've been this way since I turned 13.

I'm insecure. I get bogged down. I'm immature.

Yesterday was one of those days. I struggled to write my post. And after I hit "Publish" I almost went back to add:

ETA: This is a lame post. Feel free to skip. Sorry for wasting your time.

And, as if to prove how far off my preconceptions are, I got fantastic comments that were totally encouraging.

And I read Lysa Terkeurst's latest post which reminded me that half of my insecurity stems from trying to prove that I'm better--or, at least, equal to--other bloggers. 'My thoughts matter! I'm important! Believe in me!'

How quickly I forget that I have specific gifts and talents and I need to use to bless others, not try to make myself look better. You'd think I'd remember a lesson that I first wrote about back in 2006. But no. No, I like to compare myself to every measuring stick that's taller than me. I want to hear not just that I'm "doing enough," but that I'm rocking!

And, being as narcissistic as I am, I'm guessing you're feeling the same way about some area of your life. If that is, say, homeschooling, stop comparing yourself to those who finish a Core in 6 weeks and then move on to differential calculus with their seven year old. Those kinds of tales, while impressive, are usually just depressing because then I wonder what I was doing at that age (search for "composer")...

That's why I much prefer to read stories from people who are successful but not superstars. They're encouraging because I could see myself get there with just a little more time and effort.

And you can too, it just may take a little time and effort.

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Expectant Father


Karen Joy said...

You know, about the whole feeling lame thing... I never will again. At least, not entirely. I realized a couple of years back that I was comparing myself to some composite superwoman -- reading SL forums wasn't helping, either. It seemed like everyone was doing better in every area than I was. Then, I realized (or did someone point out to me? I don't remember) that one woman is an amazing baker, another has whiz kids that fully cooperate with school and are doing stuff 3-10 years beyond their grade level, and some women have a sparkly clean house, some women have a beautiful garden, some are hyper-intellectual, and so on... and I was saying, "I'm not all that" and feeling awfully about myself. Truth is, I'm NOT "all that." But, once I realized that I was comparing myself to the composite of all those women put together into one SuperWoman, I let up on myself. I mean, I firmly believe in being called "further up and further in" in virtually everything. But, there has to be a balance. If I'm feeling discouraged instead of inspired, I have to check myself, and sometimes alter what I let myself be exposed to, so I don't feel like my inadequacies are slamming me in the face at every turn.

Hope that makes sense. And, I hope it helps.

se7en said...

A couple of weeks ago a friend reminded me of this brilliant tip: The only time she feels down on herself, resentful that other moms get more help from their husbands/kids, not to mention manage to do so much more than she does is when she compares herself to them.

There is a trick here don't compare and you will be fine...

It is so easy to become disheartened after spending an entire week with kids playing on the beach after school everyday to think: Well they are a much better family because they fit in 18 extra-murals and only eat home cooked meals and... and... Actually we were totally thrilled with our week on the beach and spent the whole time filled with joy that God had created such a perfect world for us. I know who is really better off!

Comparative studies cause endless pain and are very destructive to our contentment factors! - Try to avoid them!

Grateful for Grace said...

I can relate to you post, sadly. I am not as young as you and I still struggle with this. It's awful, actually.

Contemplating Cadie said...

So glad I found your blog, can't believe it was under my nose the whole time.

Kristenph said...

I am insecure too. Sometimes more than others. I am also frequently surprised which of my posts gets the most comments.

Luke Holzmann said...

Karen, totally! I completely agree, and that's a good point: We can't compete with composites.

Se7en, good point <smile>.

Grateful for Grace, hang in there! I certainly don't want you to start feeling down because you're comparing yourself to people in a post about how we shouldn't compare ourselves <smile>. We all have a long way to grow. Thank God for His goodness, love, and grace for us!

Cotton Blossom, so glad you've found me now <smile>. Look forward to seeing you around these parts in the days to come <smile>.

Kristen, yep, it's nice to hear from people who are in the same boat as me <smile>.


Heather the Mama Duk said...

I've noticed sometimes people talk about how great their kid is or what impressive things they've done and they are not exactly being truthful. Sometimes what they boast about stems from their own insecurities. Comparing to others is never healthy.

Delete said...

Exactly! You summed exactly how I have fell all right there in that little post. Thanks for sharing!

Luke Holzmann said...

You're welcome, Jenny! I'm glad to know I'm not the only one <smile>.



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