Last week, one of our guests shared an insightful pearl of wisdom with us that changed his life, so we felt compelled to pass it on to the Centred Meditation community.
“Don’t compare your inside to someone else’s outside”.
Our innate tendency to compare ourselves to others is certainly not a new one. Festinger, a famous social psychologist from the 50’s, proposed the ‘social comparison theory’ which states that we determine our own social and personal worth based on how we stack up against others. It seems though that in this social media driven age, our propensity to make comparisons has sky-rocketed. And it’s no surprise since we are constantly bombarded with the photo albums of almost everyone we have ever met. We see images of our friends at fancy restaurants, our colleagues on big boats, and our acquaintances on tropical islands, and we fall into the trap of thinking that they must be happier than we are.
Well we’ve got news for you…all those pictures are merely an external portrayal of a fantasy and the truth is that we never know what’s really going on beneath the surface. Think about it…everyone has a story. We are all battling with the various challenges that life has thrown our way. Yes, some issues might be objectively worse than others, but a problem is only ever as difficult as one’s ability to cope with it, and since we weren’t taught how to effectively manage life’s challenges in school, in general we’re pretty poor at it.
The grass will always seem greener on the other side, until we decide to step a little closer and realise that it was just the sun creating an optical illusion on our eyes. We need to forget what shade the grass is over there and start watering the grass over here by asking ourselves the important questions in life and adjusting our priorities as such in order to be able to give our ideal answers to them.