We live in a world where comparison comes easily. Because of social media, we have windows into the lives of just about anyone. If you’re not careful, one scroll through Facebook and Instagram can leave you feeling like your life is pretty much the most boring of them all.
Beaches you’re not relaxing at, delicious meals you’re not eating, things you do not own and art you’re not creating. Each post becomes another nail in the coffin of monotony that is your life. Am I the only one who feels this way?
If you’re an artist, like me, you tend to follow many other artists on these social networks. It really is a great way to find inspiration and grow ideas for you’re own work. And if you’re also like me, you can so easily fall into that trap of thinking you’ll never be that good, talented or known.
So why even try?
I have those days where I don’t even want to try to do anything creative or meaningful with my life. It seems like the world is doing just fine without my little contributions already. Better just sit on Facebook and watch funny videos. That’s far more entertaining than trying, anyway.
But you know what I’m learning that changes everything?
Wait for it.
Wait for IT.
The only person responsible for where I’m at and where I’m going is me.
If I want to see positive change in my art, my marriage, my life – it’s up to me. Thinking this way helps me change my perspective. It helps me choose what thoughts and activities will get my attention. Because I am the one responsible for my own story. Instead of thinking about how far behind I am compared to others, I think about the work I am doing, the progress I have made and will make. And I choose to be thankful for it all.
And that brings me to the greatest weapon for fighting comparison.
Beating Comparison with Gratitude
It’s hard to feel jealous or sorry for yourself when giving thanks for what you have and where you’re at. Gratitude can take all that negativity and flip it on its head. Instead of thinking I’m a crappy photographer, I can be thankful I have the resources to become a better one. Instead Of being jealous of that beautiful new car I don’t own, I can be thankful I have zero payments on mine and it works perfectly.
And when I see people doing amazing things when I’m not, I can be thankful for the amazing experiences I have had in life and choose be inspired to fill my life with more of them.
And this feels so good. Because when you take responsibility for what your life looks like, you create ownership of your story. You are no longer a victim, but the hero. No one wants to read a story about someone who never overcame anything but just blamed everyone for their problems. We love movies where the hero wants something and overcomes the odds to achieve it.
So when comparison creeps in to tell you how bad you have it, think of just one thing you’re thankful for, and get back to work being the hero you know you are. It’s your choice.
When you feel like what you’re doing doesn’t match up to others, what’s one thing you can be thankful for? Let me know in the comments.