Lessons Blog · Life Blog

Why Comparison is the Thief of Joy

We’ve all seen the quotes, the posts on social media from influencers telling us to practice self-love, to not let the perception of others make you feel any less than and to focus on your own path. All of which is sound advise but in practice how many of us are truly able to do this? To focus on ourselves and not let the success of others or the appearance of a persons “perfect” life affect us. I know it is something that I struggle with all the time and it is not just on social media but in real life also. I have often found myself comparing my life to others, letting other peoples successes affect my mood, confidence of self belief. Is she younger than me? Does she have a better job than me? Is she financially secure? Does she own her own home? Is she married or does she have a family? The list goes on. The truth is jealousy, envy and self doubt are all feelings that make us human. Despite knowing better, these feelings rear their ugly head once in a while but it is how we deal with them that is crucial.

This is not a preachy post telling you to stop comparing yourself to others. If that were possible the world would be a much easier place. We are all just people, trying our best to navigate ourselves in this, sometimes messed up, world. It is perfectly natural to feel that pang of jealousy when you see somebody else sharing a big success story and, let’s face it, social media doesn’t help. I feel like as you get older you see more and more announcements popping up on your feed; engagements, babies, keys to a new home, flash cars or designer bags…meanwhile I’m scrolling through Insta, Ben & Jerrys in hand watching Bridget Jones for the 970th time. Just me? On my worst day it can tear me up, on a good day I don’t care but on my best day it spurs me on because if you can’t beat them join them and honestly we could all use a little kick up the ass sometimes. So don’t let it defeat you, let it open up a part of yourself that was slacking and try to achieve more. Bridget Jones is a God damn Queen but she’s not going to help you reach your goals.

The crucial part is to remember that, despite the Instagram filtered society we are living in, peoples reality is often a lot different. Everybody has problems, struggles and issues that they face and often peoples lives aren’t as you perceive them. Even if they are as happy as they make out, that’s okay because the world needs examples of success and joy. It’s why we read the books and watch the movies, so we can believe that happy endings exist and that you can achieve what you want in spite of all adversity.

So don’t feel bad for not always feeling 100% positive next time you hear about someone’s win. Feelings aren’t something you can control but you can control how you act on those feelings. Someone else’s success is not our failure so we need to stop acting like it is. Let it drive you, inspire you but don’t, under any circumstances, let it tear you down. Comparing yourself is dangerous but it doesn’t always have to be that way. Have your moment, feel what you need to feel but then move on. The only way we’re going is forward.

Stacey x

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