Have you ever looked at someone else and said “Oh, I wish I looked like that!”? Or maybe your neighbor got a new car or boat and you wished you had one too. Or someone else’s family always seemed to be “so” happy and you look at yours and all you saw was the squabbling and bickering. Sound familiar? Yes, we all do it. We are all guilty at one time or another of comparing our lives to others and see ours as lacking. So why is it so bad?
When we start looking at others with envy or jealousy or want, we are saying what we have or we ourselves are not good enough. It robs and steals our joy of today! It’s one thing to say “Look at Sally’s new car! Isn’t it beautiful!” and be happy for Sally than to say “Oh look at Sally’s new car….I wish I had one!” and then look at your own car and think it no longer good enough when 5 minutes ago it was fine. You see, we have a choice, right at that moment to choose to be happy for Sally and thankful for what we have or to be envious of Sally and think what we have isn’t good enough.
We are bombarded with advertisements all around us that tell us we don’t have enough, or we need newer, shinier, bigger, better stuff! We need to be skinnier, taller, more well endowed, have more muscle, more hair (or different color hair), or whatever! It’s ingrained in our subconscious from every angle. Unless you are a hermit and never come to town, watch T.V., listen to the radio or get on your computer or phone, you can’t get away from it. We are blasted with ads with beautiful people that say (subconsciously) if you don’t look like them, dress like them and have what they have, you aren’t living the good life! Now hear me out….I’m not saying that there’s anything wrong with buying a new car, new clothes or enjoying life. What I’m saying is when it consumes you, you lose your joy and you allow yourself to go into huge debt just so you can get it…there’s an issue you might want to address.
So how do we do it. By being grateful. Yes, it really is that easy…if you put it to practice. AND YOU MUST PRACTICE!!! You see, if we were to look at what WE have or how WE look with grateful eyes instead of comparing ourselves to others you would find that we would be thankful instead of envious. And it doesn’t matter how much you have either. I can tell you from experience! When I was a single mom, we lived in a house that should have been condemned. It was all I could afford! It was cold and damp in the winter and hot and humid in the summer. The roof leaked and there were holes in the floor (yes, really). Did I want something else? Yes! But I didn’t stress over it. I did what I could with what I had and was happy to have a roof over my head (even if it did leak). Eventually God did bless me with a mobile home that I moved onto my property and it was perfect! It wasn’t brand new but it was just right!! My point is that even though we lived in a house that most people would turn their nose up at, we had joy! Why, because we were grateful. Was it hard at times. YES! But I kept reminding myself that others had it worse and to be thankful we had any home at all.
You see, it’s a choice. REALLY! If you are totally honest, you probably have it pretty good! Look around, take stock and be grateful! Look with eyes of blessings! Every day! Every minute of every day! It’s as simple as looking at what you have and saying “Thank you for letting me have….” and fill in the blank instead of saying “I wish I had….” and feeling like what you have isn’t enough. Stop comparing what you have or how you look to others and be thankful.
I hope all of you have a wonderful day. See the good and let go of the rest!