As a young married couple, I often find myself comparing our lives and status against other young married couples. Some couples are having babies, others have purchased their own home, others go on so many vacations you can’t keep track when they’ll be in town. How do you stop comparing yourself to others?
I sometimes believe that this is a situation unique to my own personal life. But I clearly recall when I was single, how much I would hate that I was single, and envy all my coupled up friends. Apparently, it’s a reoccurring problem with lots of twenty-somethings–and perhaps its something that I will need to work on for the rest of my life.
When I was single, I wanted to be married. Now that I’m married, I get upset that we’re not traveling extensively or are anywhere near to purchasing a home. I look at others’ lives as if its a measurement of my success or failures.
At the same time, I truly admire others who don’t care what other people think. At my company, the parking garage seems to be the sign as to your worth to the company. Because we are a public agency, our range of salaries are open and posted on our website–without names attached, but by position titles. In one department, I know the absolute maximum that someone in that department will make. Some of these cars are so high-end, I wonder how they keep up with the car payment. However, there are two people who keep driving their old beat-up cars and I admire them so much for it.
Is being frugal the new cool?
I almost look down on people who spend their money on designer items and uber expensive clothes. I have come to admire frugality–and while I still want and crave the high ticket items, I am constantly working to be happy with what we have and stop comparing our lives to others’.
Three tips to stop comparing yourself to others
1) Look at your own situation. Most of the time, when we start to compare our lives to others, it’s because we feel there is something lacking or missing from our own life. It’s not often a reflection of the other person’s success, but a reflection of our minute failures. Rather than tell yourself how they are so much better than you, create a plan and strategy to help yourself get what you want. I really envied other people’s travels. So I started working overtime to save up for trips.
2) Remember what you do have. A gratitude journal is a great way to keep track of the blessings you do have. And remember, while you’re envying someone else, chances are someone is envying you.
3) The world needs brain surgeons just as much as garbage men. Everyone is unique, we all serve a purpose, stop downplaying your role in society and be proud of the contribution you make.
Image Source: living.msn.com