Un-chained

Passionate about understanding the human mind and improving it.

Feeling Behind In Life? You're Not

 

Image Credit: Joshua Ness (@theexplorerdad)

Comparing your personal life and achievements to others is a self-defeating habit. Everyone is on their own unique path in life. It is important to not hold the belief that someone is doing better than you because in reality, you are doing the best for you.

Every decision that you make is tailored to what feels right for your life. If you are making even the slightest effort to better yourself and your situation, you are already killing it.

I’d like to end this outdated societal norm once and for all that you must achieve certain milestones in life at a particular age. Life can be way too chaotic to have a definitive plan. The idea that we should graduate college, have a career, own a home, and have kids by a certain age is pretty ridiculous when you think about it.

From my experience, this timeline has hurt others more than it has helped them. I have seen people rush into things because they feel they are behind and end up biting themselves in the butt. They decided to start a family with someone who they didn’t truly love instead of waiting for the right person to come along. Or they chose a degree that they didn’t actually care about because society told them that it would make them successful, leaving them feeling like they didn’t have time to pause and reconsider their decision.

I know it may seem rather challenging to not feel compelled to compare yourself to others when social media displays everyone sculpting their ‘perfect’ lives in a particular timeline. I personally have felt guilty of this myself.

My path was a bit different from others in a way that made me feel like I was really behind in life. I switched majors in college a few times and eventually took a break from school altogether to really think about what I wanted to do. In that time, my peers were graduating and pursuing higher education or starting families which really put a dent in my confidence.

It took time for me to realize that comparing myself was not motivating like I initially thought it would be, it was actually counterproductive. Following along someone else’s life fed me with the idea that I could never catch up. It always seemed like everyone was 10 steps ahead of me and it always seemed to discourage me.

Do you ever take time to reflect on your life and all of the great things you have accomplished so far?

No?

Try it.

We tend to discredit our small victories when comparing them to someone else’s. It is as though we only have rose colored glasses when viewing another person’s life and never our own.

Write down things you have done in life that you are proud of even if it seems small and insignificant. Those things matter.

Perhaps there are times when you feel that you are years behind. But in reality, you’re endlessly learning about yourself and creating a life that reflects that, and that’s exactly where you need to be.

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