Comparison is the Thief of Joy
As I read her posts, I began to feel very inadequate. She was pretty, in shape, creative, witty, had a gorgeous home, had more children than me, and really seemed to have it all together.
I started to feel ugly, disorganized, out of shape, and like a really pathetic woman in comparison to her. But I kept on reading–and continued to feel even worse.
Then I landed upon a post where she talked about this woman that she so admired and wanted to be like. I was shocked when I clicked on the link and discovered the woman she was referring to was me.
Yes, this woman whom I felt I paled in comparison to wanted to be like me.
And then I realized how silly this was. Here she wanted to be me, and I was secretly wishing I were her.
It hit me anew just how often we want what we don’t have — better hair, better decorating skills, a better personality, more creativity, more spunk… there’s always someone who it seems we’d like to trade places with because they have what we want.
But trading places with someone wouldn’t fix anything; we’d just inherit a new set of things we wish we could change. No one has it all together. Everyone has struggles and difficulties.
We can waste a lot of our time and energy, wishing we were in a different place in life, but this will do nothing for us. Comparison only leads to discontentment. Contentment, on the other hand, is a state of the heart, unaffected by outward circumstances.
You might not be able to change the difficult situation you find yourself in, but you can choose to be grateful in the midst of struggles. You can’t change the personality you were born with, but you can choose to be thankful and work on developing inner character.
Instead of wishing you were in someone else’s shoes, choose to be intentional and purposeful in how you live your life so that you make the most of all that you’ve been given. Choose to embrace today and be thankful for what you do have rather than wanting what you don’t have.
It’s easy to look around and think that the grass is so much greener on the other side. However, take time to focus on watering your own grass–instead of wishing you could hop the fence!–and you’ll probably find that your grass is actually a very nice shade of green!
Crystal Paine is a wife, homeschool mom to three, self-proclaimed minimalist, lover of dark chocolate and good coffee, and a wannabe runner. For practical help and inspiration to get your life and finances in order, check out her blog, http://www.MoneySavingMom.com or purchase a copy of her book, The Money Saving Mom®‘s Budget. http://amzn.to/HKAAwo