For me this mantra hits really close to home because this is something we are all guilty of. To some degree, it is human nature to compare your status to that of those around you. I think the insecurity of being in your twenties can compound this issue. If you think about it, we are living in the decade of our lives where major moves are being made. People are getting married, having babies, going to graduate school, getting 401k’s, and starting businesses among many other things. Figuring out what stage of life you’re in compared to everyone else is literally a daily struggle.
Not even mentioning the fact that we grew up in the digital age with Twitter, Instagram and Facebook where people literally post every achievement, milestone, reward and fresh six pack abs all day every day. This is something completely unique to our generation. You could be having a great day enjoying your pumpkin spice latte, turn on your phone and find out the girl who tormented you in high school just got engaged with a picture perfect ring. Meanwhile your inbox is only being occupied by that annoying guy on tinder, who you are actually quite sure is a catfish.
I am right there with you. I have noticed that when I start comparing myself to others my levels of insecurity instantly start to rise. I start to think that maybe I should’ve gone to medical school- even though the thought of being a doctor makes me want to barf. Or maybe I’m not working out enough because it’s totally obvious that if I do it enough I’ll look just like Gigi Hadid, not. Maybe I’ll start to think my perfectly wonderful relationship with my boyfriend is moving too slow because I’m already 24 and clearly on a quick path to infertility, wrinkles and an AARP card.
On social media people only share what they want to share. It’s that smoke in mirrors concept that took me a long time to understand. Would I ever post a photo of a bad hair day on my Instagram account? Witch please. Would I make a status on Facebook about my mediocre score on my last midterm- uhhh no. Our social media accounts, for the most part, represent the best versions of ourselves and there’s nothing wrong with that. But looking at someone else’s account and thinking that accurately represents the perfection that is their life is wrong.
Currently I have friends in all different phases of life. Some have every meticulous detail of their lives planned out and others have faith that it’ll all work out. I have friends in seriously committed relationships and others who are playing and conquering the field. Comparing yourself to others is a wasteful and useless process.
Recognize that your path is completely unique to you. No one has it all figured out. Matter of fact, find someone in their twenties that has cracked the code and I will offer you my first born son. I’m sure you’ve all heard the phrase “Comparison is the thief of joy”. While you’re busy comparing yourself to smoke in mirrors, you are missing out on being fully present in this magical ride called life. It takes away your ability to be fully present in the moment and can cripple you with fear and insecurity.
I’m not saying it’ll be easy. I struggle with this every day. Where you’re at right now may not be where you imagined it to be. It might be different than your peers. If you would’ve told me freshman year of college that I would be in the position I am now I probably would’ve laughed, but right now I feel extremely blessed and happy with the decisions I’ve made. I can see now that not going to medical school, which I would’ve thought was a serious mistake, has led me to find something I’m truly passionate about. You have to fully understand that everyone has struggles, even Gigi Hadid. There’s no such thing as a perfect life, but that is what keeps it interesting. Next time you start to doubt your journey and compare yourself to others find something positive to compliment yourself about. Focus on yourself and creating the life you’ve always dreamed of, there’s no time like the present.7