Thursday, June 14, 2012

Find Your Joy

A few weeks ago, I got myself stuck in a horrible self-loathing rut. I was on Facebook and saw friends talking about moving into new houses, buying new cars, going to amazing concerts, traveling around the world, running marathons and going on shopping sprees. Then I went onto Pinterest and looked through board after board of people who were more creative than me, prettier than me, in better shape than me, and who clearly led more fabulous lives than me.
What started as a less-than-confident day spiraled out of control into a sob fest that not even a Nicholas Sparks marathon could replicate all with just a few clicks of the mouse. I was a mess and it was pathetic.
Thankfully, I snapped out of it pretty quick because A. I am an ugly crier and B. I was completely ignoring the fact that I have a fantastic life! I’m surrounded by loving family and friends that are always there for me (even when I’m being a whiny drama queen), I have a roof over my head, food in the fridge, hot running water, a pile of books next to my bed… Yeah, life is pretty sweet. But I completely ignored all that when I saw some cool pictures online.
Jealousy is the art of counting someone else’s blessings and we are all guilty of it sometimes. Social media is not helping us out either. In fact, it makes it easier to feel horrible about ourselves and our lives. It was then that I decided that I needed some serious digital detox.
I deleted the Facebook app off of my phone so I wouldn’t find myself mindlessly scrolling through a news feed full of people sunbathing at the beach or checking into my favorite restaurant for dinner and drinks. I made a pact with myself that the extra time in my day I had been using to live vicariously through others would now be used to make my own life one worth envying. Because let’s get real for a minute — if you are miserable, you are choosing to be miserable. If you feel like you are watching everyone else live out the life of your dreams, it is because you are choosing to sit on the sidelines and watch.
Make a change quickly! Step away from the computer and call a friend. Go out and have an adventure. Make some memories, laugh until your stomach hurts, go on a road trip, take a fantastically weird fitness class like hot hula, go on a bike ride, blast music and have a dance party, get dressed up for no reason, and step out of your comfort zone and make some new friends. Don’t let comparison steal your joy.
This is your life. Live it. Own it. Do things that will make you smile when you think back on them. I took my own advice (for once in my life) and I love the change. It’s hard to feel jealous of people when you embrace your own awesomeness. Once you realize that you are in charge of the kind of life you live, the possibilities are endless.

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