How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others on Social Media
We live in a time when social media no longer only connect us and are a source of information and entertainment but we are witnessing how Facebook, Instagram and the rest of the ever growing number of networks are actually defining our reality, self-worth and notion of success and happiness. More and more people started voicing their opinion that interaction with social media makes them feel depressed and not good enough. That’s mainly because we compare our lives, most of the time unconsciously, to the lives of friends or celebrities.
How to stop the vicious circle of comparing ourselves to others – based on their photos, statuses and emoji?
Here are a few practical tools to help you be on the winning side of this modern struggle:
- Spend less time on social media – I know this may sound very obvious and yet so many of us are having hard time in doing so. Social media are designed to be addictive and it’s irrelevant whether you post stuff or you just scroll down to see what’s on, you’re still there. Your mind absorbs images, impressions, comments and makes conclusions that, more often than not, are not in your favour.
- Don’t believe everything you see – A big part of what you see is actually online marketing, and yes, most of the time we fall victim to it. A glamorous picture is often not a natural state but a result of a lot of efforts in front and behind the camera. In terms of achievements, don’t get so easily wound up about claims for a 6-figure business or thousands of followers. Some of them might be true but we don’t have the mechanism to check it, so always use your critical thinking when reading such stuff.
- Focus on yourself and what’s important for you – Having online access to other people’s homes, possessions, work and life events makes us doubt our choices and often leaves us feeling dissatisfied. In general, we consider ourselves happy people but there are days when all of a sudden we become irritable, discontent and ungrateful – all of this as a result of a few clicks! To get out of this situation, first of all become aware of the way you feel ( most likely on the negative scale ). Then question yourself whether what you see is actually something you want or miss in your life. More often than not, you might conclude quickly that you’re happy with your choices and don’t need to have somebody else’s idea of happiness. If you discover you’re not in agreement with your choices, it might be worth considering what you can do to make changes towards a more fulfilling life.
- The only person you should compare yourself to is your earlier self – That’s right, you and only you know what have cost you to get where you are today, know your struggles, stumbles and victories. Yes, you may not be able to boast with a luxurious house, designer dresses or director posts but your achievements are more important because they are yours! Don’t underestimate your progress and self-worth just because you’re not where you would like to be yet. Look back, without pity or regret, and be ruthlessly honest with yourself. There is a high chance that you will be astonished by everything you managed to achieve, overcome and develop. Give yourself credit for it and be proud of yourself.
Comparing ourselves to others is common and everyone who is active online is susceptible to it.
However, social media are not dying out anytime soon, so we have to equip ourselves with the necessary skills, critical thinking and awareness to prevent them from damaging our self-esteem, personal progress and peace of mind. In summary, remember to stay positive and take the right action in the very moment you feel triggered.
What is the one insight you can take away and how would you apply it in your life to bring more balance, fulfillment and peace?