“She has it all,” I told him.

I really think she does. I had just spent days studying this amazing woman. She is hot. Rich. Likable, well-known and respected. Funny, smart. Extremely generous with her time and money. In a solid relationship. Owns a successful business. The list could go on. She has worked for all of it. She deserves all of it. My favorite part is she never ever seems to take it for granted. Most of me loves her. Part of me wants to be her. Part of me wonders why I’m not my own version of her yet. The last part of me wonders if there are women out there that ever look at me and think that I’m the one that has everything.

“Nobody has it all,” he said.

I appreciated the effort to make me feel better.

“Yeah. I know.” I said. I didn’t believe it, though.

I felt deflated when I should have felt inspired. I felt like a failure when I should have felt more motivated than ever. I wanted to be proud of this woman. I wanted to see her as proof that a woman not that different from me really can have it all. Instead, I wanted to be anyone that seems to have the things I want. I wanted to be everyone that appears to be the anything I so want to be. I wanted to be anyone but myself, negative self-talking myself into a black hole about why I’m not further along in any and all areas of my life. Yuck.

I think we’ve all read about why we–women in particular–fall into this comparison trap. I’m not here to talk about society’s influences and pressures and bias. It’s all very interesting and valid. But I don’t care about it all that much. Why this happens doesn’t matter to me. Society isn’t going to completely change anytime soon. All we’re left with to completely change is ourselves. Unfortunately, my stubborn self was pretty intent on staying completely sorry for myself for the time being.

As I wallowed in self-pity, I picked up my phone to distract myself and scrolled through my camera roll. I came across a picture I took several weeks ago:


I had to laugh at how perfect it was.

“Another woman’s beauty is not the absence of your own.”

It was the reminder that I so needed.

That I am exactly where I am supposed to be. That everyone else is, too. That we don’t need to down the best parts of ourselves for fear of outshining others. That there is enough for everyone. That there is room for more. That we can all have it all.

And that no amount of beauty or happiness or riches another has can take away the power you have to love yourself.