On New Years Eve I like to write down a few things to set as goals for the year ahead.
I pop them on my Instagram account because then I can look back and see what they are in case I forget and also, because well I like a social media post and there in lies the problem.
I posted my three resolutions on New Years eve and in the following days I realised I had left one very important one out – Stop comparing.
It’s time to stop looking at others, especially on social media and comparing your life to their life, albeit the one they post online because nothing good can come of it.
I do it too much, admit it you do it too. It’s okay, no judgement here, safe space and all that.
There’s so many avenues you’ll find yourself wandering down when you allow you mind to dare to compare. I suppose we can find ourselves allowing the joy to be sucked from us anywhere.
I find myself falling into the comparison trap as I start to swipe through social media. So it’s time to change it up and basically get a grip on reality because most of social media isn’t even close to reality.
This year I’ve a few goals but one that became glaringly obvious was to not allow social media affect how I feel.
I don’t know about you but there are times when I fall down a social media rabbit hole and I end up feeling like an absolute bag of shit, for a whole host of reasons. It’s like a gift that keeps giving.
I’ll pop my feet up in the evening and start to peruse through Instagram Stories, and so it begins.
I see those beautiful mammies, fully glam and they’re not off to a wedding, no they’re just out doing their food shop, as I’m sat in tatty PJ’s with unwashed hair just about treading Mammy water.
These mammy’s are perfect, all.the.time. Their make up is perfect, they post their kids in little outfits and these no trace of a Farley’s rusk to be seen.
Those perfect pictures of their kids, smiling, not a single baby grow button out of place, immaculate. Then there’s the infants surrounded in rose petals, it’s not like it’s a professional shoot, they’re at home fashioning tree branches into the months of the kids life – Who has the time? Also if I did that with Hannah she’d have eaten the effing petals and we’d be en route to A&E.
How do they do it, how do they find the time, are rusks banned?
Where are the kids when they’re blow drying their perfect manes of hair or having it dried, who minds the kids when they get their nails done? Look at their beautiful outfit, the flawless make up. I just caught sigh of myself, look at me??! I’ve even blogged about it, I’m not that kind of Mam. It’s too late though, it’s already crept in – Comparison, stomach churning.
There’s the fitness crowd, with their fabulous toned bodies, their perk boobs, full make up, brows and backs as arched as each other, tiny sports bra and leggings with not a sign of bulge or over hang, their ability to wear neon – actually I can’t even go there with the neon, even without neon but my bright colour envy is real. I will never look like that.
I’m not being negative saying that, but I won’t. I have two kids and have quiet recently developed a fairly hardcore addiction to whipped cream.
I have started back running, I’m for the most part loving it. I hate going but I love getting out of the house, half way around I really want to stop but it’s worth it when it’s done. A 5k jog in the park will not make me #InstaFit. I would need to work much harder and work out most day. I could get a DVD I suppose, but the reality is as much as I’d love to lie to myself and say I’ll work out for 30 minutes a day, I won’t and for various reasons, like the kids would crawl, climb, cry at me or finding the 30 minutes and if I had a full 30 minutes to myself for such indulgence I’d wash and straighten my hair – So as you can see, all legitimate reasons.
As I said I’ve started back running and as I make my way around the park everything moves, everything, like every part of me is independent. I bet they don’t even know how supple their bronzed skin is. I just did that pinch test to a piece of skin, ugh. Comparison – age, childbirth and my love for the Golden Arches and cream makes the comparison creep into the muscles and ache little more.
There’s the holiday updates, another month another city #Blessed. How are they on holiday again?!! Who’s funding this?!! I’d love a holiday, no just a break, a night away. Who minds the kids? Look how happy they are, oh I would like to be on holiday there but I’m here, in my kitchen and I’ve spuds to peel. Bet they don’t peel spuds . Comparison – takes the wind out of your sails.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve actually a fairly lovely life. Mental things have happened that have been incredible, like I’d dinner with Chris Martin and four other people in Croke Park for goodness sake. I get to work with amazing people and sit in a make up chair most week and have a professional make my tired, sleep deprived face look awake and presentable. I’ve had my share of awesome moment and I’m sure they’ll continue to roll around with my kids and by working hard.
The problem is that maybe like me you too fall down these rabbit holes and begin to compare our lives to that of others and we pit it against what we perceive.
I allow it to steal my joy. I do, I know that sad, I’m a fully fledged grown up, with kids but I do. Maybe you do too.
As I scroll a murky kind of green clouds over my eyes, swiping looking at a perfect house, clean and tidy – don’t look around, the house is upside down, swipe.
Ooohhhh those clothes – don’t look down, you’ve rusk on your leggings, swipe.
How did they get that job? Swipe.
Oh look at where they are on holiday again, Swipe.
Oh cute dog, Swipe.
Oh that gym routine though.
Stop looking. STOP COMPARING!
It’s like a kid looking in a sweet shop window, because it’s like exactly that. Social media is a dressed up window that lets you spy in on a snippet of that life, which leads you to compare and the reality is you never know the full truth.
The thing is there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that anyone is posting, everyone should and can post whatever they want. The problem is me, that I make a comparison and they will never match up because I can only live my own life and stop being an idiot trying to compare it to someone else’s.
I try my best to be as much myself as possible on social media. I do use a filter for the very bedraggled day’s, when everything is a bit manic or I’ve nothing to really say, I don’t post.
I try live my best life off and on social media. I’m aware I have some lucky days in my life, but this year I will definitely try to take myself away from comparing my life with those that I see on social media or wherever.
All of that said, there is only one comparison that does stand and is allowed. The age old, who’s the most tired in your relationship and when you compare how tired I am, to how tired Joey is, I win.
If you want to follow my not so perfect life, I’m over on Instagram.