Envy. Coveting. Rancor. Indignation. Greed. Jealousy. All these and more cause us to compare ourselves to others.
Those are the ugly step-sisters of admiration.
Recently, author Shaunta Grimes wrote an excellent article about her inner green-eyed monster who she named, Grapella. Grapella looks a lot like Darla from Little Rascals. It’s a must-read.
How to Live With and Manage Envy Like a Grown Up
What to do when life serves you sour grapes.
I have one, too. Her name is Frompatomps. It’s a mouthful, I know. My Dad was good at coming up with crazy nicknames. It’s what he called me when I was being over-the-top dramatic. We’ll call her Fromps for short.
Fromps could be good for a laugh every now and then. She was prone to running free of all fetters, aka being completely nude. She didn’t have time for clothes or rules.
She really didn’t have time for anything, to be honest. Impatience was her virtue.
When we are kids, it’s expected we will be impatient. As we grow older, we’re supposed to learn to bide our time, work hard, and wait for the results of said hard work.
But when the time comes that we perceive we’ve put in the work, and it appears someone else flies in and gets more than we do, gods help them all.
At least, that’s how Fromps feels.
When we compare ourselves to others, we’re being short-sighted. We can never truly know another person’s story, no matter how much we think we do. All we can know is what we do and don’t do. Being honest with ourselves is the first step in ridding the green-eyed envy monster from our lives.
Have we truly put in the work we tell ourselves we have? Or are we just playing the comparison game?
Is the person we are comparing ourselves to someone we really admire instead?
Once we take ourselves to a place of admiration, things change internally.
We all have bad days, it’s okay to backslide. The great thing about being a human being is we get to go to bed and wake up each morning and start over. I won’t lie and say I am exempt from those days. I had one yesterday. It felt like everything that could go wrong, did.
And I let it influence my attitude for the entire day.
On top of my shit day, I read a ton of earnings stories here from writers who did much better than I for the month of September. And I allowed that to add to my mood of woe is me.
I promise you, people who are successful in their chosen field are not sitting around wondering if the person who is more successful than they are just got lucky, or somehow gamed the system. They are trying to figure out their next step, their next move.
It’s what we should all be doing, no matter where we are on the proverbial totem pole.
Instead of allowing my mood from yesterday to bleed over to today, I chose to drag my ass out of bed and get to work. I know I’ll never improve if I sit back and wallow in self-pity. I’ll never pull my family out of the hole we’re in by complaining. And no one is coming to save us.
We are our own super heroes. We have to save ourselves.
The only person you should compare yourself to, is the person you were yesterday. Be better than her, even just a little bit and everything will work out just fine.