If you're the owner of a social media account in the 21st century, then you've probably fallen into the habit of comparing your own life with what you see online. If this doesn't apply to you, then congratulations! You're one of the rare lucky ones! But, I'm not talking to you.
I'm talking to the one that spends hours on Instagram, scrolling through the infinite highlight reel of someone else's life and wondering why theirs pales in comparison. Many of us have been in that place, on the opposite side of the screen, and I'm guilty of it as well.
For me, it isn't the Instagram models or celebrity lifestyles that trigger my insecurities. It's my own peers—the people that I see every day who seem to have a better grasp on life than I do. It's the job announcements, relationship updates, and vacation pictures that make me question how great of a person I really am to be lacking those things.
The irony in the midst of it all is that the people that I'm comparing myself to might feel the same way when they look at my highlight reel. None of us know what's happening in each other's lives behind the social media updates.
It's a popular need, these days, to show off the best parts of our lives to others. It can even become a competition if we let it. The truth is, we're only fooling ourselves when we do this. We're stealing our own joy away when we draw comparisons between our lives and those of other people.
Every time you start to feel jealous of that other person's life, stop for a moment and think about the story that your own posts are telling. You'll realize that social media doesn't paint the entire picture. It doesn't show the steps that you've taken or the failures that you faced to get to the place you're at now.
In the end, you'll never know what someone else's life is really like. Even if it is everything that it appears to be, then so what? It doesn't take anything away from your life or add anything to it, so there isn't any point in comparing the two. When you take your eyes away from someone else, you have more time to focus on yourself and everything that you have going for you.