Episode #93: Letting Go of Comparison on Your PCOS Journey

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Letting Go of Comparison on Your PCOS Journey

What you’ll learn in this episode

Being faced with PCOS can spark curiosity and lead us to seek out success stories for inspiration. However, this can also trigger comparisons that may hinder your progress. Comparison can diminish your joy, confidence, and focus, leading to doubts about your own journey. Social media often exacerbates these feelings, presenting curated success stories that may not reflect reality.

Embracing Individual Paths to Healing

Recognizing the uniqueness of your journey is crucial. Each person’s body, needs, and circumstances are different, requiring a personalized approach to healing. Shifting your perspective to embrace your unique path empowers you to move forward with confidence. Letting go of comparison allows you to focus on what truly matters—your progress and well-being.

Shifting Perspectives and Finding Confidence

Having self-compassion and grace allows you to navigate your journey with patience and understanding. It starts with discovering your PCOS differences and focusing on your individual needs while fostering a more supportive mindset. Acknowledging and celebrating every small win along the way is essential. Each step, regardless of its outcome, contributes to our growth and progress on your healing journey.

Embracing our unique journey and seeking support when needed are vital steps in navigating PCOS. If you’re seeking guidance on your healing journey, don’t hesitate to reach out for support and explore available resources.

Let’s Continue The Conversation

Do you have questions about this episode or other questions about PCOS? I would love to connect and chat on a more personal level over on Instagram. My DMs are my favorite place to chat more.

 

So go visit me on IG @nourishedtohealthy.com

 

Let’s Continue The Conversation

Do you have questions about this episode or other questions about PCOS? I would love to connect and chat on a more personal level over on Instagram. My DMs are my favorite place to chat more.

 

So go visit me on IG @nourishedtohealthy.com

 

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Read The Full Episode Transcript Here

Being faced with PCOS can create an interest in learning more, and it can cause us to dive into stories, especially stories of success. I remember when I first received my diagnosis of PCOS. I googled all sorts of things like likelihood of getting pregnant with PCOS, PCOS success stories and I wanted to know that other people that had what I had going on were experiencing the outcomes of success that I wanted and this is a good thing. It’s good to be inspired, the last couple of months here on the podcast, I’ve been sharing some inspiring stories of women that I’ve worked with. I’ve shared my story, and it’s really important to include inspiration and hope along our PCOS healing journey. Along with that, though, especially if we’re only getting snippets of the story, we can subconsciously allow comparison to come in and so, as we want to be fueled with inspiration, fueled with hope, we also need to know how to combat and navigate the comparisons that are natural, but not as hopeful along our PCOS healing journey and that is what we’re going to dive into in this episode today. So without further ado, let’s get started.

You’re listening to the PCOS repair podcast, where we explore the ins and outs of PCOS and how to repair the imbalances in your hormones naturally, with a little medical help sprinkled in. Hi, I’m Ashlene Korcek, and with many years of medical and personal experience with polycystic ovarian syndrome, it is my joy to watch women reverse their PCOS as they learn to nourish their body in a whole new way with the power of our beliefs, our mindset, and our environment, and the understanding of our genetics, we can heal at the root cause.

Welcome back to the PCOS Repair podcast, where today we’re going to be talking about how to let go of the comparison that can slip in as we go about a PCOS healing journey. So, first of all, what do I mean by comparison? What is comparison? This is this sneaky little thief that steals in to our mind, into our thoughts, and it kind of degrades our joy and our confidence, and it also derails our focus and our ability to move forward because it can cast doubt, when we start to compare with others, instead of using their journey and acknowledging that it will be different than ours as inspiration, we can start to measure our successes. Is it happening fast enough? Are we seeing the results that we want? So on and so forth? and we don’t know what somebody’s focus was, we don’t know what their situation was before and so when we start to compare, it can be very detrimental to our own mindset and our own ability to celebrate our wins and our own ability to even see the small wins that are happening.

This is completely non-PCOS related, but my daughter, who tends to be very energetic and does really well on her homework in small sections, but if she has to sit down and do a lengthy project, she gets frustrated with the having to sit still and focus, and she compares herself to other people who have an ability to focus longer than her. Now, I’ve been in their second grade classroom. No one focuses for very long. No one’s very quiet. No one sits in their seat that well. I mean, there’s a few outlier kids that really do, but most people are not sitting in their chair still in quiet and yet, because she’s just a little worse at it than others, she sees herself as not a good student and that’s been something that’s been a very difficult comparison for me to work with, with her and so I’ve been thinking a lot about this comparison, detrimental factor that can come along when we are really trying hard, and she’s trying to increase her ability and kind of her endurance of focus, if you will, and yet she still doesn’t measure up to others and this is where social media does us a huge disservice.

Social media can be a huge source of information and new ideas and good use of success stories, inspiration and hope, but it can also make us feel like, oh, that looked easy for them. Why am I struggling so much? and so this is where it’s really important to not minimize other people’s experience, but at the same time, not expect the same, and just becoming really realistic and acknowledging that what we see on the outside is a very small glimpse of all the work that they did on the inside and when we’re like, well, maybe they didn’t do that much work or they had other struggles. That’s something that I have to tell my daughter a lot. Even between her and her sister, they have different struggles. They have different things they have to work on and so while one child is very good at one thing, the other child struggles at that and over here, this child, who’s very good at this thing, well, the other one struggles at that and so we all have our different areas. Some people love exercise, and that part of their PCOS healing journey is like no big deal to them.

They’re like, oh, I exercise every day. I love to exercise but they really struggle with food, they struggle with eating disorders, they struggle with eating too much, they struggle with eating the wrong foods that they feel like I’m eating, the things that kind of give me the energy so I can work out, but they’re not nourishing my body. So I am more or less eating good calorie amount, but it’s not food that’s nourishing. I’m not balancing that well and it’s not that they can’t eat some of the things that they’re eating, but they’re not getting in some of the others that they know are important. Consistency for some people and kind of chaotic schedules is what will trip them up and it’s not that they don’t know how to cook healthy food, or that they don’t like eating healthy food, or they don’t know how to get their nutrition, their macros and their portions just right. They struggle with the fact that there’s just days that are great and days that are chaotic, and they can’t seem to get the consistency in line. So everyone has their different things that we struggle with and so everybody’s journey from point A to point B is going to look very different.

So as we recognize that fact that our journey is unique, our body is unique, our body’s needs are unique, our approach to them and our environment that we are adjusting and creating, it’s all unique and so, as we accept that and realize that, one of the things that becomes very important is to begin to have some self-compassion, some self grace as we embrace and focus and kind of in some ways, pull into our own unique healing path and I think this is really helpful when, first of all, we gain clarity, we actually move back up for a second here because even before we get into the nitty-gritty of the how to create your own unique healing path, the first step is really that awareness that our path will not look like somebody else’s. There is not a specific time frame or a specific even expected outcome that’s going to look a certain way. When we start to force a certain path or a certain way that has worked for somebody else, that’s when I see women get really stuck. It’s kind of the same idea as these fad diets that come out like what worked for one person and what truly may have worked for them, and they become a spokesperson for that way of eating.

Doesn’t work for most people because most people have a very different lifestyle, a very different body, a very different taste, so many things that are different when we compare them with what worked for them. What’s wrong with me? We’re not taking into account all those things. So as we take those things into account, there’s a degree of self compassion. There’s also a degree of just understanding that we’re different and accepting that and not just accepting it like, I’m different, but no, I’m different. I’m my own person and I get the unique opportunity to figure out what works for me and I can take all of these people’s ideas and I can have all of this inspiration but ultimately I have to get down to what works for me from a healing and wellness standpoint. That comes down to being able to listen to your body, the symptoms, and how to address those in a holistic way. Talk about that in many of the other episodes. It’s not the point today, but other episodes are very helpful at listening to the symptoms, to what’s going on with your body but this is where we really have to start with when we embrace that we are unique and we’re going to have our own experience in our own time frame, in our own way, with our own learning, then we can start to look at what is our body telling us and what path do we need to take. Where are the areas that we could lean into, so if exercise is one that we enjoy, we have covered, but our nutrition is out of control, or a difficult one for us, or we don’t like to cook and we don’t know what to eat, that was the one that we may need to lean into a little bit or if our stress levels are just keeping us paralyzed and stuck and spinning our wheels in a very unproductive and inefficient way when it comes to our health, our stress levels may be working for us great in other areas of our life. They may keep us very productive on the job, they may get our to do list done, but they may not be working well for us in our health and so they may be what we need to lean into to figure out how we’re going to find a balance there so that we can both meet our career goals and maybe look at what those career goals are and make sure that we’re not sacrificing our health to meet goals or to spin our wheels in a way that doesn’t even really help us get where we want to go, but to have a little bit more diving into what does our path need to look like.

So as we shift that perspective that we have our own unique path, we can start to really tune out the other, accept it for its hope and inspiration, accept it for its new ideas, but sift through it in a way that is intentional and purposeful, so that we’re not just getting swayed left and right by shiny objects of other people’s way of managing their PCOS but really looking into this is what’s going on in my body, this is what I’m wanting, this is where I’m struggling, this is where I am nurturing my body, this is where I’m finding struggles and what can I do to assist my body in that area so that I can overcome the things that I feel stuck with? So as we do that, it makes it so much easier to start gaining momentum and we don’t feel weighed down by this comparison. Like, why isn’t this working for me? What am I doing wrong? Those thoughts no longer are at the forefront of our mind because we’re not looking at it like, this is the one way. We are looking at it from a place of curiosity and openness to learn and experiment because we’re learning what our unique body needs for our unique path to healing and then to make this even more, take this one step deeper, I’ve had to learn my own unique path to healing at different ages of my PCOS. What worked for me in high school is different than what worked for me in college, is different than worked for me in my early 20s, way different for me than what worked in my late 20s when I went off of birth control, very different than what worked in my mid 30s. So these are all things that shift over time, too. So just because our body needed this at one point in time doesn’t mean that over time, it’ll even change in ourself and when you see that drastic of change in one person over a 20 year span of dealing with PCOS, then we just have to stop saying, this is the one way to treat a hormone imbalance. It’s so multifactorial that we really can’t compare guys. We can’t compare to other people’s journeys, we don’t know where they started from, what level of health they started from, what background of fitness they had, what background of nutrition experience they had. I mean, I had a medical background, so for me, when someone told me that PCOS had something to do with insulin, that’s all they had to say to me and within 20 minutes, I knew what I was going to do about it. Well, that’s not fair. I have a medical background for other people, and nothing really was known about PCOS, there wasn’t all the stuff there is today, this was like ten years ago at the time of this recording, and there really just wasn’t. If you googled PCOS, you were going to get like a couple of WebMD type articles. You weren’t going to get anything on Instagram, you weren’t going to get anything out there that really talked about what people were doing to see improvements and so if you were comparing yourself to me ten years ago, it would have felt like I had a secret that you didn’t have and, I mean, we could have talked about the secret, but I don’t know that at that point in time, I didn’t understand enough of how the differences were either. So over the ten years of what I have learned about PCOS is vast as well, because of my perspective shifts over what has worked for me in different times in my life, and working with different women who have different root causes, and understanding the science way deeper than I did ten years ago.

So all of that is just, again, to illustrate how we cannot compare our knowledge, our understanding, our situation, our lifestyle, any part of it, our genes, our genetic makeup is very different. So all of it really is unique, and it comes together to form even more variation amongst people rather than similarities. So with that, as you shift that perspective, I really encourage you and invite you to celebrate each one of those wins. Just realizing that, oh, there’s a difference between women with PCOS. I can let go of this comparison that I was feeling. Maybe you were scrolling Instagram and you realized, like, oh, these people are having all these results, what’s wrong with me? Why am I not being able to shed the weight? Why am I not being able to get pregnant? There’s all these people talking about overcoming infertility. Well, partially, they’re marketing something, right? but two, they’re sharing a success story, which is inspirational and wonderful, but it can start to feel like when you’re scrolling your feed and you see person after person having these experiences, because there’s an algorithm and they know what we’re looking at, and so they’re giving us more of the same thing and so we get this feeling that, oh, my goodness, I must be doing something wrong because something is working for everybody else.

So as we let go of that, just even letting go of that is worth celebrating. Worth celebrating when you realize any little step along the way, learn something new, try something new, take an action you haven’t taken before that you’re trying, whether it works or doesn’t work, whether it fits you or doesn’t fit you, just that continued curiosity and experimenting on what does work for you are the little tiny wins along the way that we want to celebrate, pat ourselves on the back for and acknowledge for ourselves, because it’s what helps us keep plotting forward as we figure out what works best for us. So these are things that can feel extremely overwhelming. I do work with women to help them pinpoint these things, make it easier for you but ultimately what I teach is how to listen to your body, how to get the information from yourself so that you’re on your own unique PCOS healing journey and you’re incorporating with that what it is that you actually want to attain, is it feeling better in your body? Better energy? Is it easier weight management? Is it fertility? Is it skin clarity and loss of acne? but there’s so many things that we can feel frustrated about when it comes to that each one of those is also going to have a slightly different approach.

So as we recap today, just I want you to feel confident in your ability to create your own pcos healing path and it doesn’t come without trial and error and if you would like support on that, that is something I can help you with. So this week for your instagram question that I would like to hear is if you would like help on your PCOS healing journey, I would be more than happy to discuss ways that I can work with you to help you understand what’s going on in your body and create a healing path for you because I’ve been getting a lot of DMs lately about getting help on this kind of confusing journey of well, how do you get started? And so if that is something that you would find helpful, please send me a DM. We can just talk about even how to get started, if you’re just looking for what podcasts may be helpful to get you started, what to do after you take the root cause quiz, how I can work with you more individually or in a group, and what resources are available for you from that. It can just be a very casual chat just to help point you in the right direction because I know I’ve been getting so many DMs lately of women asking where can they get started? How can we work together? and I just want to invite any of you that have been shy to also feel free to DM me and just talk about which resources and where would be a good place for you to get started. If you have a specific question, what podcast may be a good episode for you to listen to. I welcome your conversations and your questions, you can find me @Nourishedtohealthy. And until next time, bye for now.

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About Show

Welcome to The PCOS Repair Podcast!

I’m Ashlene Korcek, and each week I’ll be sharing the latest findings on PCOS and how to make practical health changes to your lifestyle to repair your PCOS at the root cause.

If you’re struggling with PCOS, know that you’re not alone. In fact, it’s estimated that one in ten women have PCOS. But the good news is that there is a lot we can do to manage our symptoms and live healthy, happy lives.

So whether you’re looking for tips on nutrition, exercise, supplements, or mental health, you’ll find it all here on The PCOS Repair Podcast. Ready to get started? Hit subscribe now