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How Do I Stop Myself From Comparing and Judging Myself?

Readers Question

Dear Tracy,

How do I stop myself from comparing to all the other, “better,” unschoolers? Here we are, all letting our kids have the individuality the school system tries to stamp out of them, but yet, I can’t help but feel (and some of the online–not real life–community seems to foster) this sense of a Set of Rules for How to Unschool that we all compare ourselves to (and online, get sometimes reamed for not measuring up to) and come up feeling short. How do I stop myself from comparing and judging myself, my parenting, my unschooling “style,” and my kids to others, and to that unattainable (to me, anyhow) standard? Is it just me? Or do others feel this way, too? And if they do, why don’t we talk about that more? Thanks,

Josie

Tracy’s Answer

How do you stop comparing and judging yourself? With self acceptance! We are all different individuals, we have different needs, personalities, and backgrounds. We bring our own gifts and baggage along for the ride.

Acceptance is an interesting thing, we usually have to start with self and then it flows out toward everyone else. That being said, people who are judging or acting as though they are the all knowing are really just reflecting their own judgement of self. Usually unaware of their own lack of self acceptance. The same is true with judgment, if we judge another we are truly judging ourselves! I know I’m being a little tudy-fruity…airy-fairy here, yet if you take a moment and breathe deeply and soak it in, it really will help you to not focus on what others are thinking of you

I totally agree with you about the fact that some groups or communities preach this or that and in practice do not reflect their values. In this case of “unschoolers”, they preach freedom and respect with children, yet sometimes do not give each other the same treatment. As far as these groups go, I would take what I like and leave the rest. *TrusT* yourself first and foremost, You are the expert about Your Family!!

You are not alone, I have heard this from many people and have experienced it myself! Online groups love to talk about the good stuff and if anyone brings something challenging to the table they attack or avoid. I’m sure even the “Guru’s” have bad days, but they never seem to talk about it. It’s like the “family secret” in the community…it’s there…yet no one is talking openly. It sound like you have a supportive local community and for that you are LUCKY! Enjoy them and leave the rest!

I also think IF it would help you, not hurt you, start talking about it. Talk about it on the groups or start your own I’m sure lots of people would benefit from knowing not everyone is ”perfect”.

*REMEMBER*

Self Acceptance, Self Acceptance, Self Acceptance, Self Acceptance!!!!!!!

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