My friend called me during lunch to deliver the happy news of his promotion and a staggering 100% variable pay for his outstanding performance at work. Naturally, he was elated and couldn’t resist discussing the exotic vacation that he would plan, his dream car that he would buy and so on. I asked for a grand party and he readily agreed.
Few hours later, I receive a call again from him, canning the party, vacation and the car. “Wait, what? Why brother. What happened?” I asked. Apparently, one of his colleagues had received a promotion and a 150% variable pay. My friend could still plan that vacation and the car with the amount of pay he had received but suddenly the inclination to do that was gone. Just because somebody else had received something better, something more than him which was eating him away from inside.
This instance highlights what is happening with most of us. I was and still am a victim. Is this a new phenomenon? No, it used to happen with the older generations as well but has been highly aggravated because of we being the ‘Twitter for breakfast, Facebook for lunch and Instagram for dinner’ generation.
I am usually contented until I come across someone or something and start the futile, foolish and fuck all (yeah, I am really angry!) exercise of comparing myself.
If I travel to Bali, then there would be someone Taking a pill in Ibiza.
If I run a mile in 7.40 minutes, then there would be a 9 to 5- working-Usain Bolt with a 5.45.
If I have 1K followers on Instagram, there would be a friend having a 3K.
If I go out on 3 dates in a month, there would be someone spending a gala time with more dates than that. So you see, I can instigate my inferior complexity by almost anything silly. Sounds sick but it’s not only me, it’s you, you and yes, you as well.
Why are you unhappy? – The reason is you and not you!
Why I say the reason is you – because you are letting these irrelevant thoughts make you feel little in front of others.
And why not you – because it is not your inability to do a certain thing better than others which is responsible for this deep sense of unhappiness. My friend was extremely joyous with his appraisal numbers which meant he did work according to his expectation. He regrets knowing the numbers of his colleague. Now, what’s the outcome if we don’t discuss the solution to this nasty problem. I remember a very popular quote on human mind by John Milton “The mind is its own place and in itself, can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven.” And as they say, “It’s all in your mind”. So the solution is to control our mind which isn’t easy. This is a post that I had written on my Facebook wall when I had faced a similar instance turning my joys to sorrows which is quite relevant in this context –
Look at the positive side of everyone. Look at what makes you appreciate someone and bring about that positive change. Or if that isn’t happening, as Tom Bilyeu says “Competing against others can be awesome in short bursts, but if you focus your attention outward for too long it will rob you of all of your joy, for there is always someone better. If, however, you compete against yourself, you can only win. Every time you beat your previous best you have just grown more powerful – all of your energies are on improvement instead of jealousy. And over the long run, that’s how you become great”.