envy and instagram

Posted on: Tuesday, August 12, 2014

comparison is the thief of joy

I’m the first person to admit I LOVE Instagram. I love sharing photos from my big and little life moments and following other people on there – whether family and friends or bloggers and celebrities I like.  I have caught myself feeling envious of other people by looking at their Instagram (or blog or tweets or whatever)  and comparing what they are doing with what I’m doing. More than I’d like to admit, scrolling Instagram or reading blogs often makes me feel ‘less than’ and that my apartment/clothes/cooking/whatever else isn’t quite as amazing as everyone else.

It’s important to think about the stories I tell myself about my life – and the stories I put out there on the Internet or mobile apps about my life. It’s even more important to focus on living a life of full of joy and peace in REAL LIFE LIFE, not just in Instagram or social media life. Hope you get as much out of this article as I did! xo

If we’re living a real life, we’ve gained the understanding that getting more doesn’t always lead to feeling happier. In an Instagram life, we’re instead focused on making it look like we have a better life than everyone else. But even as we take our own pictures and apply filters to our world, we’re flipping through other people’s photo streams and feeling envious about what we see. We ask, “Why isn’t that our life?” It’s a hard cycle to break because, as my friend pointed out, someone will always come along at some point and be better than you.

Thinking we have enough is also rare if we’re leading an Instagram life. It comes in large part from the stories we tell ourselves that feed the envy.

“If I only had a little more money…”

“If I only had a nicer car…”

“If I only had a bigger boat, then I’d be happier.” But that’s the problem.

They’re only stories. Let’s say all those things happened. By making these stories our focus, we’ll never be satisfied. There will always be something else we don’t have that someone else does, and our envy becomes a trigger for all the bad behavior we’re supposedly trying to avoid. After all, it’s really hard to focus on saving as much as we can and sticking with our financial plan if those things get in the way of having what we think we want right now.

Do we focus on building a real life that makes us happy or do we attempt to live an Instagram life and pretend that it makes us happy?

full article via NYT hereimage via Pinterest here


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