This blog post was inspired by a conversation I was having with my nephew who recently went though a break up. He was reflecting back on the good, the bad, and the ugly of the relationship as most of us do when going through a break up.
One of the things he talked about and really stuck with me is how so many times his ex girlfriend would be scrolling through Instagram and start asking him “why don’t we have xxx?” “When are you going to take me somewhere nice?”. He said it made him feel really bad because the “things” she was talking about and the trips she was admiring was something he just couldn’t afford.
I was like well first of all you are 20 years old and how dare her make you feel bad. Protective auntie mode definitely came out! But whether you are 20 years old, 30 years old or in your 40’s, we all need to hear this… It is okay not keeping up with the Joneses.
Instagram is a highlight reel and honestly I think the beginning of the year is such a perfect example of it. This time of year, many people are sharing their highlights from the previous year and I think that’s amazing. Good times and wins should be celebrated but I can totally see how the comparison game can come out to play. It can be hard to see baby announcements when you have been trying so hard to have a baby, home purchases when you have been working your butt off just to pay rent, and people taking amazing trips when you just want to have a day off. Trust me, I get it. But remember these 2019 highlight posts are just that, a HIGHLIGHT.
Between every baby announcement is a personal story and maybe even a struggle we do not know about, behind every post about a home purchase and dream vacation is someone working their tail off to get there. We need to remember that.
I know you are working hard too, I know you have been working towards that *fill in the blank*. Whether it’s the vacation or a home or whatever it is, I know you are working hard towards it, but I also know it takes one strangers post to feel discouraged and to start comparing. It’s so easy to see a perfectly curated post and forget that there is a real, human being behind whatever account that you’re following, and forget they are most likely doing the same mundane daily tasks as us.
Repeat after me, “I will not compare my behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.”
Trust me, I had struggled with this too at first. When being on social media became a huge part of my job it was so hard not to compare myself to others. I was comparing my chapter one to everyone’s chapter 8.
3 Examples To Re-train Your Mindset When You Find Yourself Comparing Your Behind The Scenes To Someone’s Highlight Reel
- When you see someone post about their dream job – tell yourself “Wow, she must have worked so many hours to get there”
- When you see a baby announcement when you are struggling with getting pregnant- maybe reach out and ask if they used any special apps to track fertility. Reaching out to to someone on Instagram and them replying back is a reminder that they are human too and maybe they will share some knowledge you had no idea about
- When someone shares they are on their dream vacation – happily follow along for any money saving tips they may have used when booking their trip or reach out and ask!
I know these may sound so small and maybe even silly but we must remind ourselves that there is a human going through their own struggles behind each post. If we start to retrain our minds to know that we can have whatever we want and to remember that most people are working just as hard as we are to get whatever they are posting about, it truly changes so much.
And if you still find yourself following along someone’s journey in an envious way, maybe it’s time to unfollow or unsubscribed.
Read my Instagram vs. Reality post here