One of the worst habits we have as human beings is the scourge of comparing ourselves to other people. Focusing on what they have, what they look like and what they’ve achieved in comparison to ourselves.
You can blame the Instagram age or you can realize that this is a very old problem. It starts in childhood when our parents or relatives compare us to other people – whether they are someone else’s kids or our own siblings.
If your parents or relatives constantly made you feel bad that you didn’t match up to other people, I truly feel for you.
Because they created a cage of low self-esteem and low self-worth that you’ll find it hard to break out of unless you make a conscious choice to do it.
You may have been told that your self-worth hinged on:
- How many marks you got in school (Indian parents, I’m looking at you)
- How closely you matched society’s conventional notions of beauty
- How much money your parents made
- What sort of house you lived in
- What car your parents drove
- How many famous or influential people you knew
And so on…
When you’re older, you’ll realize that none of these things really matter.
That the only thing that matters, after all, is the person you are and the life you create for yourself and for the people you love the most.
In later life, most of us realize that it is the things in the list that follows that really matter:
- Are you being loving and respectful to yourself?
- Are your relationships with others loving and respectful?
- Are you growing and learning as a person?
- Are you doing what you truly love?
- Are you living a life of meaning and purpose?
- Are you contributing to the people and to the world around you?
Most people are lacking in one or more of these areas. This second list is on a very different vibration than the first list, but it’s all that really matters.
So stop comparing your life to other people’s lives. Comparisons come from a place of scarcity, not from a belief in abundance. They come from jealousy and envy – a low vibration.
If you’re creating your life from a low vibration, even though you may get everything you want, you’re likely to lose it all if you continue to operate from that vibration.
When you realize that most rich and famous people are generous and giving by nature and that everything they have is because they believe in an abundant Universe and create value for others, you will bless them for what they stand for.
There’s nothing spiritual or good in being poor because if you can’t help yourself, you can’t help anyone else. And there’s nothing wrong with having expensive toys, especially when you’ve worked hard to earn them.
So it’s not fame or fortune that’s the issue. It’s why you believe you NEED them to feel worthy. If you were taught to measure your self-worth by external factors, you can lose sight of what truly matters in your life.
So ask yourself whether buying that flashy Ferrari is going to create a more meaningful life for you and your loved ones? Or are you doing it to prove to other people (who really couldn’t care less, by the way) that you’re better than them?
If acquiring expensive toys brings you only fleeting pleasure before you have to buy something else to fill up the void inside, you need to question your underlying motives.
You need to ask yourself WHY you need all these things. And you need to address the root of the problem, your feelings of low self-worth and low self-esteem.
Does living in a bigger house equate to better family relationships and more harmony? Then go for it. But if you’re doing it to prove to someone else that you’re better than them, don’t bother.
Because you’ll realize that nobody but you cares about all the possessions you acquire to compensate for your feelings of inadequacy.
You’ll realize that even if you lose your beauty, your fame, your possessions, and your money, what you’ll have left is YOU and the people closest to you.
So, do you love the person you are? Do the people in your life return that love? Are you contributing to their lives in a meaningful way?
If your answer is yes to all those questions, then you need nothing more, and everything you have over and above that is a bonus.
Have you’ve read that famous article called, The Top 5 Regrets of The Dying, about the findings of a palliative nurse who recorded the most common regrets of dying people and put her findings into a book of the same name?
These 5 top regrets of the dying include:
- Wishing they had the courage to express their true feelings
- Wishing they had lived a life true to themselves
- Wishing they hadn’t worked so hard
- Wishing they had stayed in touch with their friends
- Wishing they had let themselves be happier
Ultimately, the only thing that matters, is what you believe about yourself and how you treat the ones you love. Everything else is fleeting and impermanent.
So do what you need to do, to make your life and the lives of your loved ones more meaningful, whether that means overcoming your troubled childhood, learning a new skill, changing your career, spending more time with your loved ones.
Adapt your life, your goals, and your expectations so that you can focus on what truly matters.
Priya Florence Shah is the author of Devi2Diva, an emotional self-care book for women. In the book and online course, you’ll learn how to throw off the shackles of your own limiting beliefs, come into your power and design your destiny.
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