The Comparison Game On Social Media

The first thing I do in the morning when I wake up is to reach for my cellphone. (Don't we all?)

Facebook and Instagram gets checked even before getting out of bed. You would think checking the time, weather or email would be better choices, but no, social media trumps them all. At this point, it has become an automatic unconscious routine for me (I know, I'm working on this, don't worry).

Where else can you catch up on the most current events, get the latest celebrity news, find new recipes or fashion ideas, read motivational quotes or see what your friends are up to, all at once?

Social media has revolutionized our way of living and is a great outlet for people to express themselves and find inspiration. Whether you treat it like a hobby, an obsession (for many), or even how you do business, social media has many great benefits.

However, it can also have the total opposite effect and can often lead to jealousy and comparing yourself to others- which are the two quickest ways to kill your ambition, motivation, and make yourself feel bad about yourself.

comparison

You know that feeling you get when someone posts about the new project they're launching, that exotic trip they're taking or that trendy new restaurant they're eating in? That feeling of, "They're doing something really cool and I'm not!" That worry of not being as far along as you want to be or the notion that everyone else is ahead of you in that imaginary race that only exist in your mind. All these comparisons strip away from your happiness and only feeds into this social media fantasyland.

Because that's what social media really is. Fantasy.

People filter what they choose to show. For the most part, it's the end result, never the means on how it was achieved, that gets shown.

highlightreel

Even the most confident person falls into the comparison game every once in a while. I do it too. It's natural for us to want and lust over the things we don't have.

So how do we stop these feelings from occurring?

1) Don't Compare Your Beginning to Someone Else's Middle: I have to constantly keep reminding myself of this. I'm in my own journey and at my own pace. An area where I struggle with, is with this whole blogging world. It's easy to get caught up with other bloggers and compare myself with them. They're prettier than me, have better content, a nice fancy camera, have connections, etc. I have to stop and realize that all these successful bloggers have been doing this for years. I just started eight months ago. There's no way I could even begin to put myself in that same category. To be successful takes time and hard work- it's not going to happen overnight. All I can do is keep focusing on myself and the rest will come.

2) Look In The Mirror, That's Your Competition: You know that saying, "The only person you should try to be better than, is the person you were yesterday"- well, it couldn't be anymore truer. We often waste our time obsessing on what other people are doing that we lose focus on bettering ourselves and achieving our goals. We need to stay focused on what's in front of us instead of checking on everyone else. They're not looking at you and worrying about what you're doing, they're moving ahead. You don't gain anything from comparing yourself and you might even throw yourself off track by doing so. It's self-sabotage and not worth it. Remember, "Winners focus on winning, losers focus on winners".

3) Enjoy Your Own Life Without Comparing It With That Of Another: In order to achieve more in life, you have to appreciate what is in front of you. One of my favorite Oprah quotes is, "Be thankful for what you have; you'll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don't have, you will never, ever have enough". Give yourself the credit you deserve and keep moving forward. Instead of viewing other people as competition and being envious of their life, view them as motivation. If this person could do it, so can you! The fact that they accomplished or attained something that you want, just means it's possible. No one is born with super hero powers or a bigger brain. It all just comes down to how bad you want it. That's it.

4) The Better You Feel About Yourself, The Less You Feel The Need To Show Off: One of the greatest things about social media is that you get the chance to post the fun and exciting things happening in your life. But sometimes the portrayal is not accurate. I used to have a friend that was all about her social media appearance. We couldn't even enjoy a nice simple girl's night in without having to worry about posing for a picture so she could share it on Facebook. She had to constantly post and stage her every move. Very misleading- I know for a fact that her life is not as exciting as she paints it out to be. But I guess that's the whole point? Trying to portray this perfect life- which we all know doesn't exist. We all go through our own struggles, insecurities and not so great days, but remember, those pictures will hardly ever get posted.

The quality of your life is determined by how much you enjoy and appreciate the people and things around you, not by how many followers or likes you receive. And to compare yourself with others that think so, is just setting yourself up for disappointment.

"Create a life that feels good on the inside, not one that just looks good on the outside."

Posted on September 22, 2014 and filed under Blogging, Mind & Body.