The thief of your joy

Are you happy?

I don’t mean if you’re happy in this moment.

Are you happy with your life overall? Are you happy with where it is?

Are you content?

If something AMAZING happened to someone else, would your automatic response be one filled with sincere happiness and a wish for everything in the other’s life to be filled with light and positivity? Or, would your automatic response be to compare your life to his or hers and ask the ultimate question we ALL ask ourselves at some point: “What about me?

There isn’t one person in the world who doesn’t feel like Person 2 at some point in his or her life.

It’s just how we are. Keeping up with the Jones’.

It’s perfectly fine to feel this way as long as you realize what those thoughts are actually doing.

They are stealing your joy.

Are you okay with that?

Every life is filled with happiness. You just have to be awake to find it. And, happiness comes in all forms so your happiness may look quite different than my own or someone else’s.

The fact is, we all have something to be thankful for. We all have joys in our lives that are huge to us but may not be to someone else.

Case in point, a child in a third world country may be ecstatic about his new pair of shoes, while a middle-class American may have a whole closet full of shoes and may not instantly think of shoes as something to be thankful for. The middle-class American may instantly think of their car as a huge blessing instead.

You see what I’m saying?

Another example is people who are bummed about being single while everyone on Facebook is getting engaged, married, or having kids. My mom told me something that resonated with me while we were talking about this topic. And, by “we were talking” I mean to say I was complaining about being single…AGAIN.

She said, “Amanda, single people want to be married and married people want to be single.”

Coming from a woman who’s been married to my dad for 30 years. (Cue collective ‘awwww’)

What she said reminded me that comparing my love life to others was stealing my joy because I focused on what I didn’t have rather than looking up and around at what I did have: a QUIET apartment, I can go wherever whenever I please, I can cook what I want to cook, I can hang out with this boy one week and that boy the other week…

Okay, the last one never happens but you see my point!

Married people could say they have someone to come home to, someone to cuddle with, someone to constantly do stuff with, etc.

Once you realize every human being is at a different stage in their lives AND not one life path is exactly the same, you’ll see comparing your life to others is a lose-lose situation.

Let’s stop comparing ourselves to others, start looking at what we’ve been blessed with, and find our joy again.

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