Facebook is a great place to go to connect with friends and family. It is a great place to read moving articles. It is a great place to keep in touch with old friends. Simply it can be a fun distraction. But Facebook is also a great place to compare yourself to others.
Oh look at Jenny! She goes to the beach every other week! I wish my life was filled with travel. I wish I was that free ….
Bob and Sarah must really love each other. They write each other love letters on their Facebook page every other day. When they don’t post love letters they post photos. They look like they are so in love. I wish I had a love like that ….
And Courtney is so fit! No matter what I do, I could never be that thin. I will always be uncomfortable in my body. I wish I could feel and look like Courtney ….
Comparing yourself to others is so dangerous.
You make huge assumptions about other people. You don’t know what is really going on with them. Jenny may have lost her job. She could be island jumping and spending her life savings with no real plan. Bob and Sarah may be working through infidelity. Their daily affirmations might be their life raft. Courtney may be struggling with body image issues of her own.
You just never really know.
And remember, most of the time we all put our best photos on Facebook. Facebook is a curated view, not a realistic one.
When you compare yourself to others you are essentially telling yourself, I am not enough. And that is not true. You are enough. You have a unique gift to give the world.
I listened to a positive psychologist the other day, Emiliya Zhivotovskaya. She talked about something she saw at the pool this summer. There was a big diving board with a long line. Kids would eagerly move to the end of the board and jump off in funny unrestricted shapes. They didn’t care what they looked like or how they were “supposed” to jump. The adults would walk carefully to the end of the board and dive in perfectly. Or they would jump off in a straight line like a pencil and hold their nose. I found this fascinating. As adults we are so conditioned by the shoulds. We should be … We should look like … It makes us rigid, cookie-cutter robots.
This rigidity affects our happiness. It keeps us stuck in unhealthy cycles. Ultimately it takes away the magic that is in us. It strips away our unique power. We stop recognizing ourselves.
Don’t do this to yourself.
The next time you get on Facebook and think, I wish I could be like her, take a deep breath. Say to yourself, I am enough. I am everything I need to be in this moment.
Another way to enable your confident soul to be unapologetically is to spend less time on Facebook.
When you are bored, call a friend. Talk to her about what is really going on in her life. We are more connected than ever, but we aren’t always really connecting.
When you get on Facebook be real.
When you show up in the world be real. Be your vulnerable imperfect self and love that self.
Turn on some music and dance.
Nurture and celebrate the unique that is you.
Instead of watching the world live their life, go out there and live the life you want! Don’t look back!
You can find out more about Dr. Chris Michaels here.