Killing Comparison, Nona Jones Author Q&A
Today, we have an awesome interview with author Nona Jones regarding her new book, Killing Comparison: Reject the Lie You Aren’t Good Enough and Live Confident in Who God Made You to Be (releasing September 27, 2022). Make sure to get the book!
MW: Congratulations on your new book! So exciting. It is a vulnerable book where you guide us to go back to moments where people’s words or actions affected how we saw ourselves. You detail moments where you sort of started seeing yourself differently. What was it like when you felt sort of more freed from other’s opinions? Is there a moment that comes to mind?
Nona Jones (“NJ”): I remember the moment when I realized my journey to getting free from toxic comparison and insecurity had turned a major corner. I found out I hadn’t been invited to a gathering that many of my peers in ministry had been invited to. Although I initially had the thought, “Why wasn’t I included,” the very next thought was, “Great! That makes more time to spend with my sons.” I didn’t think about it again and can recall that experience in a clinical way instead of emotional. I have no idea why I wasn’t invited, and I’m not really interested in figuring out why because I’ve come to the place where I only want to go where I am celebrated. Not where I am tolerated.
“I didn’t think about it again and can recall that experience in a clinical way instead of emotional. I have no idea why I wasn’t invited, and I’m not really interested in figuring out why because I’ve come to the place where I only want to go where I am celebrated. Not where I am tolerated.”
MW: You write that “perfection is in the eye of the Creator.” If someone is struggling with bitterness or comparison, how do you advise them to begin exploring what the “eye of the Creator” sees?
NJ: It’s so important to remember that everything about you has purpose. It may seem like your flaws are holding you back, but I believe our flaws are actually what helps us anchor our success with gratitude. Seeing ourselves as our Creator sees us means realizing that everything about us can accelerate the purpose for which we were created. For a long time I didn’t understand why my childhood was so dysfunctional. While my classmates were raised in seemingly loving homes and taking vacations with their families, my mother regularly reminded me that she didn’t want me and even brought her boyfriend home from jail after locking him up for sexually abusing me. Looking back on that, I can now see how the pain I endured created the conditions for me to have empathy and compassion for others who have endured childhood trauma. That couldn’t have happened had my upbringing been idyllic. Instead, I now have a ministry that empowers others like me who believe they are damaged goods because of what happened to them. My Creator, our Creator, saw my pain and gave it purpose.
“Looking back on that, I can now see how the pain I endured created the conditions for me to have empathy and compassion for others who have endured childhood trauma.”
MW: I am a Gainesville girl (UF grad). What are some of your must-see spots in Gainesville, FL?
NJ: Go Gators! Gainesville is a small town, and a college town, so one of the must-see spots would be the University of Florida. It is a truly beautiful campus. Beyond that, you may want to check out the springs for some great diving.
MW: I love that you include a lot on social media and how to interact in a healthier way on social media networks. In what ways do you find them to be positive tools?
NJ: Social media gets blamed for causing insecurity, but while it may expose insecurity, it isn’t the cause. Insecurity pre-dates social media and, besides that, two people can see the same post and one can walk away inspired while the other walks away discouraged. I think the key to a positive experience on social media is to “weed your feed.” Unfollow any people that make you feel bad about yourself or your life in comparison to what they post. I follow a very small number of people compared to how many people follow me and I do that because I believe it’s important to guard your eyes in order to gird your heart.
MW: Killing Comparison has a 3-step detox. How did you design that detox?
NJ: It’s based on what I did that worked for me. First, recognize when your insecurity is triggered. Take inventory of what you think and how you feel. Second, reframe the thing that triggered your insecurity from an indictment on your worth to an opportunity to learn and grow. If seeing someone lose weight makes you feel like you’re failing at your own diet, reach out to ask them what they’re doing. And, third, release toxic comparison by learning to celebrate others’ success instead of feeling threatened by it.
MW: You wrote that “even what we lack has a purpose.” I really loved that. What does that mean to you?
NJ: I think if we were honest, many of us would be arrogant if we had the thing we wish we had. I know a man who is 5’9 and he once told me, “Nona, if God had made me 6’3, I don’t think you would have been able to tell me anything.” In my case, I talk at length in the book about how I wished I had a booty, but I got my father’s chest and my mother’s butt; flat all the way around. The reality is that, if I had a booty, I would probably have been off the chain. God knows what we can’t handle and often keeps it from us to protect us.
MW: What is your favorite way to do self-care?
NJ: I’m a major fitness enthusiast so I workout twice per day most days because, one, I don’t drink coffee so a morning workout wakes me up and, two, I have a lot of pans in the fire and my days can be very stressful, so an afternoon workout let’s me release the stress.
MW: Is there a special tradition you and your family keep or engage in?
NJ: Yes, we structure our weekends where Fridays are family night, Saturdays are one-on-one time where my husband and I each take one of our sons and spend time together and Sundays are date nights.
MW: What are your top three essentials (things you don’t leave the house without)?
NJ: My phones (I have one for work and one for personal), my water (I try to drink my body weight on ounces of water each day) and JESUS.
MW: If you had to define Christianity in a sentence, it would be:
NJ: Living a life surrendered to the lordship of Jesus Christ and what the Word of God reveals about righteousness.
Find more Nona here:
Buy Killing Comparison: Reject the Lie You Aren’t Good Enough and Live Confident in Who God Made You to Be.
Nona Jones is an international speaker, preacher, author, and the head of global faith-based partnerships at Facebook. Previously, Nona held executive leadership roles across the private, public, and nonprofit sectors. A graduate of the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program, Nona was named one of Essence magazine’s Under 40 Women to Watch and Florida Trend Magazine as one of Florida’s “30-Something All Stars.” She is currently President of the Gainesville (FL) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated and serves on the University of Florida Digital Advisory Council. She most recently served as Secretary of the Florida Juvenile Justice Association Board of Directors and on the Georgia Statewide Human Trafficking Task Force. She is a graduate of Leadership Florida and the Presidential Leadership Scholars Program, a unique leadership development initiative led by President Bill Clinton and President George W. Bush. Nona and her husband lead a church together in Gainesville, Florida. You can follow Nona at http://www.nonajones.com.
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