Actually, the grass is rarely greener. We all have this idea that the person over there has it better than we do. Maybe you’ve gotten better at removing this toxic lens, but it takes consistent work to keep it at bay - especially in the world of social media.
The New Car
See your neighbours brand new car? It’s expensive, it’s beautiful, and it’s out of your reach. You can’t help but wish you had it. But do you really want it because it’s pretty, or do you want it because it’s a status symbol that has you convinced that their life is more put together than yours? That tends to be the case.
When these seeds of jealousy, envy or even resentment, start to grow we need to dig them out and toss them away like a nasty weed. If we don’t, they’ll grow uncontrollably and soon nothing will be enough to satiate your need to find greener grasses. Owning the most expensive things will never make you happier in the long run, and momentary highs can often lead to some pretty awful lows. It’s a brutal cycle.
Riding the Wave
It’s interesting, this thought of possessions making someone happier. Yes, a certain level of security will facilitate happiness but it’s as if we continue to try to make that happiness permanent by repeating the cycle of buy, buy, buy. Riding this wave of consumerism over and over and expecting a different outcome every time, it’s insanity at its core. In this context, the grass is greener on the other side. The side that doesn't take part in the consumerist mindset.
Not only do we long for what others possess physically, we long for the love and/or attention they seem to get from others. Online your coworker’s relationship looks so perfect it’s hard not to be jealous, but what you don’t see is that her relationship is far from perfect. Imagine the amount of turmoil is caused by keeping up this image of a perfect relationship, and to what end? More likes, more comments, more follows? Please don’t envy a position you can’t truly see. The point is, we don’t know what’s really happening under the mask. It’s not hard to fake a smile, but we all deserve the real thing.
A good way to help dig out the bad seed, I’ve found, is to ask yourself whether or not you know for certain that this person’s life is better than yours. The answer is always a big ‘No’. We only know what they want us to know, and we only see what they want us to see. What if their grass is just painted to look green and is really brittle and brown? We can never truly know the full story so we should stop gawking over the fence and grasping at the mirage.
Tend Your Own Garden
Remembering that happiness comes in different forms to different people is key. Repeating the approach of your friend, neighbour or family member won’t necessarily make you happier. People will portray a happier, more well rounded life to the outside world and some people will give up everything to keep up the facade. The grass isn't always greener on the other side.
So stop staring over the fence. You’re ignoring the fields and luscious gardens already around you. Learn to tend your own garden by finding out what really makes you happy and focusing on that. Be gentle with yourself, relearning how to take in the information we’re given takes time and patience. We promise you, it’s worth it.
Be Your Own Protagonist
At the centre of all of this is the fact that everyone’s story is different. We can get so easily sucked into believing someone else’s story is worth more than our own, but that is not the case. Every story deserves to be lived out and every story deserves to be celebrated.
Be you, be your own protagonist, no one else can be.
P.S. It’s okay to take a break from social media when need be, in fact we highly recommend it. Health before wealth, always.
Written by Emily Van Dyk
Pomp and Sass believes in quality over quantity. Their luxury woven towels will last and only get better with time, just like your own story.