If I had to take a guess, I have a thought that contains “I want”, or “I really wish I had” AT LEAST 10 times a day. I am constantly seeing things I didn’t know about, that I immediately decide I need. Usually it’s something small, like clothes, shoes, some kind of electronic item, etc. These things are easy to move past. My options are, buy it, or realize I don’t REALLY need it and move on!
What really sticks with me, are the big things. The things people talk about relating to their lives. The type of things people easily get jealous about, and wish they had for themselves. I’m talking, house, family, career, lavish vacation, or luxury car type things. These are the things you hear people talk about, and you spend all day thinking about how you can make them happen for you. Or you think “what am I doing wrong?”
Now if you’ve read any of my other posts, you might be thinking “Wow Dana this sounds like a you problem.” And yes, this absolutely is something I experience at this point in my life, however it is something I have realized quite a while ago and I am actively working through. But I know this isn’t just a me problem. This is an everyone problem no matter what anyone says. The grass is always greener isn’t a saying for no reason!
But what a giant WASTE of time this is. Not only is it a waste of your time, it’s not helping you in anyway. We all need to stop comparing ourselves to everyone else.
The Biggest Hurdle
I realize that we live in the age of social media, and that makes the above statement infinitely harder than it used to be. We are constantly battling everyone’s highlight reel. We follow people based on the things we wish we had, wish we did, wish we looked like. Social media is giving us a false idea of people’s lives, and the sad part is we believe it. It becomes increasingly difficult to get your head out of that “I want that” space, after scrolling past 5+ people with the things you feel you’re missing!
Do you ever feel good in those moments though? I know I don’t. I actually start to feel anxiety and stress as I scroll deeper through social media pages sharing what I want but don’t have. This is not how I want to spend my time, and I don’t think it was the intention of these social media platforms, however it can be difficult to overcome.
Remind yourself that not everything you see is real on social media. That no one is sharing the moments of struggle in their life. Most people only want you to see the good. Remind yourself that you are comparing yourself to someone who may be missing things that you have, and want for themselves! Just as you are sitting here wishing for xyz thing, the person making you feel this, is wishing for something different. No one is perfect no matter how beautiful and exciting their instagram account looks.
I implore you to take a break. Log your self out, or start unfollowing the accounts that are constantly in your face and causing you to feel bad about what you don’t have. It may be difficult at first, but it gets easier. You’ll stop wanting to spend so much time on it, and won’t really even miss it. Give yourself a break to start paying attention to everything you do have instead!
You can do it
Once you’ve removed the social media aspect, or at least lessened it, the next thing is to change your thoughts. This takes work and isn’t going to be easy, but this is the heavy lift if you want to move passed these thoughts.
Every time you start to feel yourself go down the path of “Why don’t have I have that?”, counter that thought with something you do have. Think about the supportive family you have, or the fulfilling career you have. This will be different for everyone, but make sure to choose something that’s important to you to put your life back into perspective.
This might be hard at first. It’s so much easier to get wrapped up in what we don’t have, then what we do. So if you are finding this to be difficult, start journaling what you are grateful for. For example, I used to write down 3 small things that I was grateful for each morning, and then one good thing that happened at the end of the day. When you start keeping tabs on these things you realize all that you do have. Then you can focus on those things, rather than what other people are doing around you!
Now I realize sometimes this isn’t enough, and you have to take a deeper look at yourself to figure out why you feel this way so. However I’ve gone on long enough, so that is a post for another day. Let me know if that is of interest!
Until next time,