I’ve been guilty of comparing myself to others for as long as I can remember. It’s embarrassing, really- comparing my achievements, looks and work to family, friends and total strangers. Of course, it doesn’t help that social media makes it all too easy to fall into that trap. You’re at home scrolling through Facebook or Instagram or any other social media platform, looking at your someone else’s posts. They’re out partying, dating someone who’s really attractive, or achieving a milestone such as graduation or marriage. When you compare yourself to someone else- perhaps even an influencer or celebrity you don’t even know- it only makes you feel worse about yourself.
There are some tips to try and keep yourself from making such comparisons with others. Perhaps one or more of these will stop you from comparing yourself to other people the next time you’re on social media.
1. Remember That Social Media is a Highlight Reel
It’s okay to follow accounts you love- including friends, acquaintances, family members, celebrities and influencers. Maybe their content looks really cool, it inspires you, and/or they’re someone you really, really like. But if someone’s posts are making you compare yourself to them, then you need to take a hard look at yourself.
The most important thing to remember is that social media doesn’t tell the whole story- it never has. That celebrity sharing a sexy bikini photo may deal with body insecurities. That mommy blogger who shows photos of her kids looking adorable may not share all the times they fight or have temper tantrums. Your friend who’s going through a break-up might try to hide her pain by going to parties and posting about it. The main point of this is to take everything you see on social media with a grain of salt.
2. Live in the Real World
Staying on social media comparing yourself to others constantly is- to put it mildly- extremely draining and wasteful. Just scrolling through post after post after post is even a little creepy, when you really think about it. How would you feel if someone was going through all of your posts in the same manner? Personally, I’d feel a little weirded out- but that’s just me, I suppose.
It’s never a bad idea to disconnect from social media into the real world. Hang out with a friend or two, go on a date, read a book, or do some sort of hobby. Try something new or tackle a new goal- something you’ve always wanted to try. It’ll keep you busy enough that you won’t want to waste hours on end comparing yourself to people who are living their life.
3. Figure Out Your Thing- And Then Do It
Everyone has their thing that they’re into- so much so that they focus their social media around it. It could be career-based, food content, or lifestyle-related. When you see someone putting out content that you think is cool, it may bring on the comparisons. Why isn’t my content that cool? Should I change what I’m doing? These are just some of the questions that will trigger you to compare yourself when it’s unnecessary.
If you change up your content or your approach to social media, do it for yourself- not because your friend or some celebrity did so. Figure out what kind of content you want to put out there. It could be the food you cook, makeup looks you’re trying out, or something else entirely. Do it, and then try to love yourself and your content. That will keep you from wanting to compare yourself to others because you’ll be happy with what you have going on.
I won’t lie and say that this is an easy habit to break. Even I know just how easy it is to fall back into the trap of comparing yourself to others on social media. But breaking that vicious cycle of making those comparisons and then feeling awful about yourself is vital if you truly want to feel good about yourself. Just remember- social media doesn’t show everything- it’s merely a highlight reel of one’s life, and that includes yours.