I want to share with you a line from the official bio of Arielle Estoria: “She is made of sass and good intentions, and has a deep love for car karaoke, brunch and flowers.” Doesn’t that just instantly make you smile? Doesn’t that sound like a woman you want to know?
Arielle Estoria is a spoken word poet, author, speaker, model, and actress. I deeply admire Arielle and the way she speaks as if she’s plucked the words straight from her soul and sent them into mine, warming me like a cup of coffee and inspiring me to speak my own truth in a way that will reach others.
Arielle’s Instagram feed is a space of inspiration. It’s a collection of words that will lift you up, and she is the encouraging pep talk we all need when the light at the end of the tunnel seems so far away.
One post in particular really caught my attention. It’s why I invited Arielle on the show with my fingers crossed, hoping she’d dive into this topic with me. When Instagram can serve as a battle ground of comparison, fighting an inner battle with ourselves to have and do whatever we see in the perfect images on our phone screen, Arielle speaks to how we can find motivation — not comparison — on this little app. We’re shifting the comparison mindset once and for all.
Meet Arielle Estoria
Arielle has always loved storytelling. Through college she loved theater and performing, and eventually found spoken word, landing on a competitive poetry team. Meanwhile, she was pursuing a degree in psychology with the ultimate goal of becoming an art therapist for kids. She worked with children on the spectrum, and loved the work.
It wasn’t until later in her college experience that she realized there was a gap in her courses — No one was really talking about the decade of your 20s and what happens to you during that time. Arielle changed her concentration from child psychology and wanted to work at her university.
Her mentors wanted to push her out… But why? She learned it was because they felt she was meant for more than the safety of a career at her university. So she tried it out. Arielle turned back to her love of storytelling and poetry. She told me in the interview, “I can’t go to a nine to five job now. I’ve professionalized being a tornado of a human being. I thoroughly enjoy it.”
Now, she performs poetry on stages around the world, inspiring audiences with her own brand of magic, helping people recognize their own worth.
Arielle has a special gift helping people recognize their value and worth. But she laughed a bit in the interview saying, “I’m an Enneagram Type 4, and type 4s believe they are inherently flawed. So it is a constant battle for me, too.”
With so much exposure to images and words on social media that could be motivational, but often induce comparison fatigue, where do we even begin to recognize our own worth when we see so many others who seem more worthy than us?
First, we get tactical on this topic. Arielle’s first step is to mute any account that you don’t come away from with excitement or happiness. As soon as you hear comparisons popping up in your head, press the mute button.
Second, begin to coach your inner dialog and rethink how you see yourself. Arielle says, “I am an individual. It really doesn’t matter if anyone else is doing what I want to do. Because at the core, how I’m going to do it and execute it, isn’t going to be like anything anyone else would do.”
“It’s not cockiness, it’s a fullness of understanding that the way I sit at the table, and what I bring to the table, are not the things someone across from me brings to the table.” Arielle used the example of a potluck. You’re literally bringing something to the table, but if you’re hyper focused on someone else’s dish, you’re showing up empty.
Rerouting the Comparison
It is important to recognize why you are comparing yourself, your gifts, and you achievements to someone else. In this process, it’s possible to reroute the comparison to a more constructive thought process.
For example, how many times have you caught yourself reading the Facebook status of a friend or peer announcing a very exciting development in their professional life and thinking, “Well, why did I get that? Why haven’t I been recognized for that?”
Step back, do you really want THAT specific thing? Arielle mentioned that friend landed a modeling opportunity with Nike. She compared herself wondering why she wasn’t asked to model for Nike. And then she realized, “I don’t even want to be a model!” With practice, Arielle shifted the mindset: “What I really want is to be a spokesperson for Nike, not a model. So what would I do with that opportunity if I received it?”
Ask yourself: Why is this person and their achievement, whatever it may be, so triggering to you? How does it relate to where you want to be and where you expect to grow? Reroute the comparison into a constructive inner dialog and use it to understand yourself and your goals on a deeper level.
Accept the Glorious Opportunities
Arielle shared a poem she wrote about what it’s like to believe you are only destined for negativity, and how challenging it can be to recognize and accept the “glorious opportunities” in your life.
It truly brought me to tears, and I hope you’ll press play on the episode above to hear the poem from Arielle herself. The message is that there are moments and opportunities in your life that are written for you, with your name on them. They are destined for you. We can be so quick to assume those moments are the negative ones.
But what can’t we do that same association, and assume the positive, glorious moments have our name written on them, too? The poem is for anyone who has felt that the wonderful things in their lives are not meant for them and that they’re just waiting for the other shoe to drop. Can you relate?
“I’ve had to condition myself to recognize that life doesn’t always work within the context of the negative. And it’s about how much you let the negative affect you, your internal response, and your external reaction,” Arielle shared.
More from This Episode
Why is the decade of our twenties constantly overlooked as far as resources to support our mental health and all the transitions we’ll face during this time? Arielle and I talk about how those ten years can feel like a mess — holding miscellaneous jobs, making and losing friends, finding a life partner (or not) — but how they’re actually weaving a web and crafting our experiences to help us find what we’re truly meant for in this life. I love Arielle’s message and how she speaks on topics that we all struggle to understand. Press play on the episode above for more inspiration from the incomparable Arielle Estoria.
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