Yes, it is undeniable that everyone today can easily share their lives with everyone – their journey, their season. With everyone around us having the best time of their life, as they wanted us to see it, we cannot deny that we feel jealous and enjoy what they have.
Ideally, we want to have attraction, wealth, intelligence, success, a happy family, a healthy relationship, and happy life.
For some, comparing themselves with others is a form of inspiration. But this does not happen to everyone. We have different lenses and views when we look at things. Sometimes, comparing ourselves and our lives with others affects us negatively, such as envy, low self-esteem, low self-confidence, self-pity, isolation, jealousy, resentment, lying, anxiety, and depression.
According to the Social Comparison Theory proposed by Leon Festinger: ‘People have an innate drive to evaluate themselves, often in comparison to others, making all kinds of judgments about themselves, and one of the key ways that we do this is through social comparison, or analyzing the self concerning others.’
This theory has an upward and downward side. The upward side is when we compare ourselves with others to see them as an inspiration to achieve what we desire for ourselves. On the other hand, the downward happens when we compare ourselves to someone we see as worse than us to make us feel better – to feed our ego.
Our comparison with others is never accurate since we have different needs and personalities. Comparing ourselves with others can make us focus on the wrongs and turn things into an unhealthy competition.
In this age, to lessen your comparison with others, start to lessen social media where everyone seems to be happy and to have it all – always remember that there are a lot more than a social media post that you do not know every story behind it, also remind yourself that you do not know every detail of someone’s life – you do not see the whole picture, and always practice the habit of being grateful with what you have.
By giving too much energy to someone else’s life, you are consuming so much energy that you are supposedly giving to yourself – energy to focus on achieving your goals and becoming the better and happier version of yourself.
Stop comparing your journey or even your season. At the end of each day, what matters most is to live our life with happiness, whatever current journey we are in. Stay focused on your own life and live day by day to satisfy yourself by finding contentment on your own.
Some people may be ahead of us but always put in your mind that they also face personal battles they encounter along their journey, as well as you are.
So, instead of comparing, learn from their experience and focus on your personal growth as a person. Do not kill your contentment. Celebrate your small steps and all of your achievements.
Dina Relojo is the social media manager of Psychreg. She is a high school teacher from the Philippines.