gerund or present participle: comparing
1.estimate, measure, or note the similarity or dissimilarity between.
“individual schools compared their facilities with those of others in the area
form the comparative and superlative degrees of (an adjective or an adverb).
“words of one syllable are usually compared by “-er” and “-est.””
The word compare is a vast and meaningful word when used. It is used to measure and/or note similarities and dissimilarities across different things, people and events. But how could this one simple word can destroy our plans and goals if we are not careful? When we were young we experienced being compared with our siblings, when we were students we were compared to our contemporaries and see if we can fare well in academics and school activities, when we started working, we were compared to our peers and colleagues to see how we measure up to the standard performance evaluation of the organization and when we had our own family we compare ourselves how are we doing in terms of parenting, career and achievements with contemporaries. Isn’t it a bit taxing that right from the start we were being compared to different people at different events and ages of our lives? And now that social media had become a norm in our daily lives comparison becomes an unending habit. How many times do we check the update of our friends and relatives in social media having a glimpse of their semi-charmed life? Did we ever talk to ourselves wishing the images that we are seeing are us? Sometimes we cannot avoid the envious feeling while browsing endless newsfeed in Facebook and Instagram. It stirs anxious thoughts, why it wasn’t me? You know deep in your heart you are capable of achieving and doing the things you see in the social media.
Then the competitive spirit sinks in. You know you were raised to be competitive and you will do at whatever cost it will take to prove that you are not lagging behind based on the things you see. You try your best to fit in, you try your best to have the best holiday, you try your best to prove you were a good parents to your kid and you try your best to look happy while deep inside your thoughts and jealousy is slowly eating you up. Most of us yearn for approval and validation. It is inherent to our core being. Seeing endless images of happiness, travels, relationship goals, children, family and achievements makes us think big about ourselves. Even if we had a grand plan for ourselves drags us down because of we feel like what we are exerting is inadequate. Our insecurities and frustrations that stem when we are still young becomes more powerful because we are set to prove to the world that we are at par and can do the things other people can do. There is nothing wrong with dreaming, planning and goal setting. Success tastes good when we ticked off our dreams and goals.
Dreams and goals are meant to be fulfilled. But always remember, God always know our perfect time. Not everyone can do activities and things at the same time. That is why life is called a journey. Not everyone who is trudging the road goes into a straight path. The path towards success can be murky, muddy, dark, ominous, rocky and sometimes risky. Our happiness lies on simple things and not on luxuries. Our happiness and success will all come together if we learn to focus on our choices and do things the right way. Throw away the jealousy and envy; walk straight through the path where you are headed. Not all people go to one destination. Our world is vast and full of places to see and enjoy. Find your niche and where your passion lies. Not all people arrived at one destination. Look at crossroads as pathway to learning. Comparing is never an answer nor the day to day glimpse of other people’s lives in social media. Our life is our choice and our choice depends on how we trudge our own journey. Always pray and wait for God’s perfect time and learn to understand what “Desiderata” is all about. It is a great reminder for us to be grounded and focus on the things that matter most to us.
When times get too tough and a simple reminder will do, just read this beautiful poem….
P.S. This poem is a personal favorite of mine, it keeps me grounded and sane when all craziness and chaotic thoughts try to dug deep in my psyche.