In an ever-evolving world of social media and instant gratification, I think it has become so easy to compare our lives to others like it is second nature. This can come in so many different forms too whether it is comparing your body to someone else’s, your financial state, your relationship, your job, the list seriously goes on and on. So how to we break this toxic habit? I think we all acknowledge that everyone’s feed is a “highlight reel”; we see the best, most edited moments not necessarily everyday life but somehow we cannot stop this game of comparison. Personally, I still find myself struggling some days when I am feeling low or I am stuck doing the boring adult things rather than traveling like everyone else seems to be on Instagram. I have learned, however, how to stop these thoughts in their tracks when they start affecting my mood and I strive to remind myself that I create my own happiness.
It’s a fact of life that someone is always going to be better than us whether that is being richer than us, or skinnier, or smarter, or more confident but that does not mean that we are “less”. Just because someone may be more successful in their career than you are right now does not mean that you are unsuccessful; you are both just on different paths and timelines that should not be compared. When you spend all of your time feeling bad about yourself because you are comparing yourself to someone else, you are wasting time that could be spent improving yourself and getting closer to your goals. I promise that the person you are comparing yourself to shares the same anxieties and self-doubt that everyone feels on occasion, but you are only seeing their best, most vibrant moments. Do not compare your sweatpants, Netflix-binge day to someone else’s seven day Bahama vacation. We all have good and bad moments.
When I scroll through Instagram and notice that trickle of self-doubt and sadness, there are a few things that I immediately do. One: turn off social media. It might only take a few minutes for a break or maybe you need a few days to recharge and refocus. Second: I remind myself that I am not failing because someone else is succeeding. As a naturally competitive person, it can be hard to accept that life is not a win or lose competition with everyone else. The only person I need to beat is the person that I was yesterday because I should be constantly striving to be a better person. So, just because someone is further along on their fitness journey than I am does not mean I am failing on mine. Good for them and good for you for taking your own steps! Third: Surround yourself with real people! It is so easy to get caught up in the glamour and illusion of social media, but nothing can beat the honesty and quality of real-life conversations and interactions. When you spend time building genuine relationships, you realize everyone is struggling through the same doubts and insecurities and you realize that there is so much to be thankful for in life. I am certainly no expert on stopping the comparison game; I mean, I am only human but since I started trusting myself and trusting the timing of the universe I have realized how much easier it is to fight back against those insecurities.