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Tulip vs. Rose

How would you compare a tulip to a rose?

When I think of a tulip I think of spring, new beginnings, and the bed of tulips that bloom year after year under my parents’ bedroom window.

What comes to mind when you think of a tulip?

When I think of a rose I think of love, Valentines Day, anniversaries, and romantic date nights.

What comes to mind when you think of a rose?

Not one thought that comes to my mind about either flower is about appearance. 

Rather, the thoughts that come to my mind are feelings or events that I have associated with the particular flower.

I don’t compare which has the better colour, the prettier petals, or the more pleasant fragrance. I wouldn’t even begin to compare these two flowers because each flower is unique and there is no proof to say that one is better, prettier, or more pleasant smelling than the other.

Would you be able to say which flower is prettier than the other?

Sure, you may have an opinion on which you like better, but your reason for preferring one flower over another is most likely not because you think one is prettier than the other. It’s simply just your personal opinion.

Since we are not able to say exactly which flower is prettier than the other, why are we so quick to look at others and think that they are prettier than ourselves? 

 I do not focus on the appearance of flowers rather the feelings I have associated with them, so why do we assume everyone around us is focusing on our outer appearance rather than what is on the inside and what we have to offer the world? 

Three years ago, I compared myself to others on a daily basis and it only led me to feeling discouraged and self conscious about myself.

I thought everyone was better looking than me, smarter than me, and more capable than me.

I was battling with comparing myself to others on an hourly basis and I knew something had to be done about it in order for me to be happy and confident with who I was, so I confided in my psychologist, Bryan, from the Westwind Eating Disorder Recovery Centre. I have mentioned my psychologist many times throughout the time I have been blogging; he is an extraordinary man who truly understands eating disorders and I would recommend his help to anyone seeking recovery.

When I told Bryan about the struggles I was having with comparing myself to others he told me to compare a tulip to rose.

Immediately, I was struck by his suggestion because I couldn’t compare a tulip to a rose. They are two completely different flowers and when he asked me to tell him which flower was the “prettier, more beautiful flower” I could not.

Both of them are beautiful in their own way. 

I hope you are able to see that you and I are the same as the tulip and the rose used in my example.

I am no better than you nor are you better than me.

There is no proof saying that I am prettier than you nor is there any proof saying that you are prettier than me.

A tulip is more cup shaped than a rose, but does that make a tulip more beautiful?

A rose grows as shrub producing many flowers, but a tulip bulb that is planted will only produce a single flower. Does this make a rose superior to a tulip?

The answer is, no.

Just because you may have broader shoulders than the person next to you does not make you better or worse than them.

Just because the pace you run on the treadmill is 0.2 mph slower than the person running beside you does not make you less worthy than them in any way.

I want you to start thinking of yourself as a flower. You are beautiful in your own way and others do not compare you to the others “flowers” in the world.

No one is judging your petals to the flower sitting next to you because they are both unique and there is no evidence to say that one is better looking than the other.

Be proud of the petals you have and appreciate your uniqueness because, surprisingly, everyone who you think is judging you is not, so you shouldn’t be judging yourself either.
Exhibit confidence in your own petals and people will begin to notice your inner beauty and all of the wonderful things you are able to offer the world.

As always, if you are struggling and need someone to talk to feel free to email me. I wrote this post because I know how common the battle with comparing ourselves to others is and a few of my very close friends are currently struggling with this issue.
I love helping others and if you have an issue that you would like me to write a post about do not hesitate to ask <3

Love,
Meg
xoxo


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52 Comments

  1. Reply

    Sable@SquatLikeALady

    June 26, 2012

    Meg. I am in love with this post. I seriously think this may be the wisest thing you have ever posted. It’s beautiful…. and I’m not talking about its appearance =)

    I will try to remember this when I compare myself to others or when I fear someone else is comparing herself to me!

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Wow thank you so much Sable :)

  2. Reply

    Meg this is beautiful!! One of my favorite posts in a long long time. What a great concept and of course you wrote this beautifully! It’s so true too, you really can’t compare the two flowers. So why do we constantly compare each other and ourselves? This was a great way to start my day, thank you!

  3. Reply

    Wow . . . What an incredibly powerful post. I absolutely love the analogy; it’s so true! You’ve given me a lot to think about. Have bookmarked this!

  4. Reply

    Alexandra

    June 26, 2012

    <3 Beautiful post m'dear– this totally inspired me to view myself as a unique and special individual today :)
    "Both of them are beautiful in their own way" <– YESS. I think that's what makes life so awesome– imagine how lifeless and dull the world would be if everybody was forced into a cookie cutter mold! I'll take my flaws and quirks any day over being a boring blah bum haha 😉
    Hope you have a beautiful day love!

  5. Reply

    Linz @ Itz Linz

    June 26, 2012

    I love this analogy. And I love roses because of my great-grandmother Rose… that was the first thing that came to mind when you first posed the question! Such a smart and wise lady, you are!

  6. Reply

    Kimberly @ RedefiningKim

    June 26, 2012

    Meg – This is a wonderful message and one that needs to be shouted from the rooftop. I see too many women and girls comparing themselves to others and finding themself “less than”. We are all beautiful and should embrace those things that make us beautiful!

  7. Reply

    Alex @ therunwithin

    June 26, 2012

    Meg, you nailed it. This metaphor is so beautiful I honestly had no idea where you were going until I started reading more and more. You truly have some of the most wonderful ideas in your head. I hope you keep spreading this positivity to empower this community even more. I know I need it!

  8. Reply

    Meg,

    This post is SO incredibly beautiful. I love that analogy so much! Bryan really knows his stuff and it’s so beautiful to see you passing on his knowledge and helping other girls going through the exact same things we went through. Admittedly, I still compare myself to others. It’s not a constant thing by any means but I feel like it’s difficult not to in our society. That being said, I do love myself and appreciate all of the unique things I have to offer – just like everyone else. <3 LOVE YOU, BABE!

  9. Reply

    Good analogy, Meg! You’re beautiful.

  10. Reply

    What an amazing way to reframe your thoughts – beautiful post to share!

  11. Reply

    Tara @ Sweat like a Pig

    June 26, 2012

    Wow, this is probably the best post you’ve ever made. So beautiful x

  12. Reply

    Tayla @ She'll Be Free

    June 26, 2012

    Thanks for this lovely post, Meg. I really needed to hear this today. You’re very inspiring<3

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Thank you Tayla <3 I am so happy you enjoyed xo

  13. Reply

    Amy

    June 26, 2012

    Oops! I hit post before I finished typing :)
    I was going to say, seriously Meg this is a fantastic thing to share! I appreciate your honesty in your struggles with an eating disorder. It’s difficult to talk about and you do it with grace.

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Thanks for the comment Amy :) You went to spam! I just saved you!

  14. Reply

    Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile

    June 26, 2012

    Beautiful post, Meg! It is so, so true. Every single person is unique and beautiful in their own way. Love this.

  15. Reply

    Jessica, the_toned_teach

    June 26, 2012

    Wow, what a beautifully written post! You are quite the writer & inspirational speaker, my dear. Thank you for sharing your heart with us- it is lovely :)

    ps: be on the lookout for my guest post coming to your mailbox today. I wanted to send it so you had enough time to read it & let me know if you need any edits! Thanks love!

  16. Reply

    Yellow Haired Girl

    June 26, 2012

    Wonderful post, Meg!

  17. Reply

    Wendy

    June 26, 2012

    Meg, What a beautiful post. Others need to do that comparison- how true:) What a great analogy! In the world of ab shots, progress pictures- its a mind game but a game that really can mess with the psyche. It’s positive blogs like this that can help change the mindset! I will be reposting this on my page tonight. :))

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Thank you again for the support Wendy! You make me so happy :) <3

  18. Reply

    Caitlin

    June 26, 2012

    I love this analogy! It’s so true, what is the use in trying to determine which flower is prettier than the other? They are both beautiful! Can’t we just appreciate them without wasting precious mental energy over trying to figure out which is better? No words can describe how much I adore this post and you.

  19. Reply

    I. Love. This. Post. Everything about it. You’re awesome. That is all!

  20. Reply

    Ali Mc

    June 26, 2012

    GREAT post meg! I try to tell myself the same things. Working in a fitting room has taught me lots! nearly 100% of women complain about their bodies and appearance. ALL shapes and sizes…..it drives me nuts! I’ve made it a point to try and inspire others by attempting to be confident in my own skin. Sometimes it’s hard but if you keep practicing it becomes easier.

    I love both flowers and I think you’re great!

  21. Reply

    Fantastic analogy, fantastic post. You are wonderful, my love.

  22. Reply

    Lisa

    June 26, 2012

    Beautiful post my dear friend!xoxo

  23. Reply

    Your therapist sounds amazing. Therapy for disorders is all about changing the way we think (cognitive therapy), which is hard to do when you’ve been thinking one way for so long, but metaphors like this are all we need to hear to shift our thoughts slightly. Amazing!

  24. Reply

    Abby @ Abz 'n' Oats

    June 26, 2012

    So glad I read this today! So, so, so perfect! :) Tulips remind me of my grandma’s backyard. She has multiple little round gardens filled with tulips of every color. Some of them are brighter than others, some of them have jagged edges at the top of the petals, some are shorter or taller than others. They are ALL beautiful though! :)

  25. Reply

    Kim @ Sweet Heart Eats

    June 26, 2012

    What a great way to think about it! I too fall victim to comparing myself to others. I’m so hard on myself, yet never judge others. Usually, people are much kinder in their opinions of me than I am of myself. It’s definitely something that I”m working on and will keep your post in mind when I’m having one of those days! XO

  26. Reply

    StoriesAndSweetPotatoes

    June 26, 2012

    Love this.
    Love you.

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      I LOVE YOU TOO 😀

  27. Reply

    Katie @ Katie Moves

    June 26, 2012

    what a lovely and inspiring post! bryan sounds like a smart man! the comparison game is a hard one to get out of! it’s important to remember how unique we all are. <3

  28. Reply

    What a great analogy! Love this! I compare myself to others as well, and I’m going to have to keep this in my mind when I start to! You are beautiful girl… inside and out! xoxo

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Awww thank you Brittany :)

  29. Reply

    Thank you for this post! It is so easy to start comparing ourselves to others without realizing that we are all special in our own unique way.

  30. Reply

    This is beautiful Meg! I love it. I definitely find myself falling into a comparison trap sometimes – sometimes when it comes to looks, and lately, more often when it comes to knowledge and career aspirations. I always start to get a little nervous when talking to someone who is an actual dietitian because I worry that I’m not really worthy of talking about health and nutrition when I haven’t even started school yet. I just have to remind myself that whomever I’m talking to is most likely not judging me – they just want to help me learn more!

  31. Reply

    Steph

    June 26, 2012

    Meg, this was great. I know I tend to focus so hard on “improving” myself that I compare myself to others in hope of looking/acting/doing things like them. Sometimes it’s inspirational and it allows me to set goals for myself. Other times it’s depressing because I don’t feel “as good as them.” I know I need a reminder that I am different than everyone else and everyone else is different that me. Nobody is better or worse, just different. Thank you so much for the reminder!!

  32. Reply

    I love this, Meg!! I know I struggle sometimes comparing myself to others, but this is so true! Everyone is different, and you can’t compare two different people. :)

  33. Reply

    Girl, this is such an amazing post. You seriously have a beautiful soul and mind. You touch my heart pretty much every time I read one of your posts. I definitely struggle every day with comparisons, but I never let that stop me from being an amazing person.

    ALSO I’M COMING TO BOSTON. Word. 😀 😀 😀

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      Awww what a beautiful comment Lindsay AND EXCITING NEWS 😀 WHAT!? I FINALLY get to meet you!? 😀

  34. Reply

    What a beautiful analogy! I can always count on your blog for words of wisdom and I love it :) Thank you for this post! I have been struggling a lot with self esteem and body image lately and even though my eating my be better, it is still a struggle to look in the mirror on a daily basis! Now with some powerful words from a great person, I think I will be able to look with a fresh new perspective :) Thank you Meg!

    • Reply

      Meg

      June 27, 2012

      You are such a sweetheart Danielle xoxo

  35. Reply

    Lauren (@poweredbypb)

    June 26, 2012

    Meg! This is an amazing post! I’ve been really struggling with the comparison trap and this gave me a lot to think about!

  36. Reply

    Gorgeous post Meg! LOVE the analogy! I’ve never thought about it like that, and it’s definitely a great way to think about things 😀

  37. Reply

    This is beautiful!

  38. Reply

    Dolce

    June 26, 2012

    This is so awesome. I was pretty much in tears because I know I am so guilty of comparing my own God-given, unique body to other girl’s. He made us all so beautifully different!

  39. Reply

    kristle

    June 26, 2012

    my thoughts are expressed in all the other comments these ladies. know that this post has definitely helped and inspired me, among many people!

  40. Pingback: Marvelous in my Monday!

  41. Reply

    Carlyn

    August 1, 2014

    Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful thoughts. You’re such a great person with a big ♥. May God bless you more so you can be a blessing and inspiration to others. Now I love all kinds of flowers. HAHA! Thanks and have a nice day! :)

  42. Reply

    Birgit

    December 14, 2014

    Have you ever thought about publishing an e-book or guest authoring on other blogs?
    I have a blog based on the same information you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my subscribers would enjoy your work.
    If you’re even remotely interested, feel free to send me an email.

    • Reply

      Meg

      December 15, 2014

      Thanks Birgit! I definitely want to write an e-book and freelance for different websites!!!! What is your website? Email me at megtherhn@gmail.com? 😀


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