Social networks: how to get rid of envy? 6 steps to harmony in the soul
Anxiety comparison syndrome is a real disaster for the user of social networks. Of course, people always compared themselves with each other and always wanted to keep up with the Ivanovs, Petrovs and Sidorovs. However, today things are much worse than before: thanks to the Internet, we are literally inundated with evidence that our friends, real and virtual, have achieved much more in life than ourselves.
Here, for example, a long-time friend posted photos of her home on social networks, which she spent a whole year on arranging. The tour starts right from the front door: the photo captions speak of Italian tile on the floor, an exclusive custom-made chandelier, an incredibly soft sofa that harnessed a fortune, and definitely an antique chest of drawers and a real fireplace. Kitchen - a separate conversation: a spacious, open-plan, bathed in sunlight.
The next post in the feed is news from the publisher, and another friend is noted. The last couple of years she has been writing a book, and now this book has been published, although, judging by the passages, it turned out far from a bestseller. But the question is: how did she manage to write as many as 300 pages? With three children, without a husband and on a 6-day working week? Maybe someone in the publishing has helped push through her book? This happens all the time ...
But a classmate posted on the FB photo marked as "in bliss on the island of Martinique" and she also comments on his enthusiastic emoticons. Of course, it is better not to use her words: in Russian she had a “troika”, and not even a very firm one. However, in the photo next to her handsome husband, who, it must be understood, and paid for the entire banquet. What, what is she able to do, what can't I do?
Day after day, we go to social networks and see our widely smiling friends, their enchanting weekends, their new cars, their delightful trips around the world. And once we find ourselves behind the endless, nervous, unbearable scrolling news feeds. And at the same time, it doesn’t bother us at our neighbors, but the most trivial envy.
If a person who is tormented by an alarming comparison has not stopped in time, with time he begins to envy even those whom he doesn’t really know, because day after day he attacks the same rake: he enters his accounts in social networks, pours himself some tea a glass of wine is taken mentally - and sometimes out loud - to condemn and criticize all those who posted these posts and photos. Posted without thinking about how someone can be hard to consider them.
There is nothing new or unusual here: back in 1953, psychologist Leon Festinger came up with his theory of social comparison, arguing that we constantly compare ourselves with others in order to determine our status, to become aware of a step on the social ladder. And often we look from the bottom up to those who are more successful, and from top to bottom - to those who are at a lower level than we do. But if looking down a lot helps to feel better, then the bottom-up position is a great recipe for a cocktail of envy and suffering.
How to switch from other people's success to your
Fortunately, you can use an alarming comparison for your own good, using it as a system of signals that help improve your own life.
- Notice and analyze. If a happy couple, serenely walking in the park, disturbs you, there is a reason to think: perhaps you are ready to start your personal life? Or is freedom from the traditional family and related concerns more important to you than a hundred touching VKontakte statuses that you could share if you stayed with your unloved husband, but smiling defiantly at the public?
- Use negative emotions for your own benefit. They will help you understand yourself, identify difficulties: if the fact that your boyfriend or girlfriend has lost weight, evokes jealousy in you, isn't it time to take care of your own health and diet? And if the success of a colleague seems like a slap in the face, maybe you are simply unhappy with your current job?
- Count other people's money. And do not hesitate to be shy, because no one will know about it anyway. Suppose you really have nothing to buy a new car or relax on the islands. But have you ever counted how much money you need for this? Set yourself a goal to get them, drawing up a plan of real steps that will allow you to collect a specific amount by a certain time - say, by August of next year.
- Look from the side at your own profile. Each of us has what others envy. And you have one too. To realize your happiness, it will be enough to write down all the things that bring you real pleasure. Do you like to read until the morning, wander around the web as much as you want, before stupidly play your favorite computer game? Sometimes turn off the phone and roll in front of the TV until you get bored? Fine! Do you think a mother of triplets or a career woman burning at work can afford something from this list?
- Be honest with yourself. Probably you don’t feel like writing, analyzing and solving anything at all, and in general you are tired to such an extent that you are not able to take out the garbage. Well, there is another great news: you are completely free in your choice - to deal with the garbage or rest a little more, and let everyone else wait.
- Put an experiment. In the end, social networks can not enter at all. Try to take a pause for a week - and see what your life will turn into. There is a high probability that without looking at someone else's perfections, it will definitely not become scanty, but, most likely, will seem to you more fulfilling and interesting.