Wealth isn’t everything, but as a friend of mine once said, “I would rather cry in a mansion than in an apartment.” For anyone who has been on the Ramen noodle diet or prayed that they don’t overdraft on their debit card while waiting in the check out aisle, you know that worrying about money genuinely sucks. Fortunately, my college days are behind me and I have a job that allows me to live comfortably. But in this day in age, it seems like most people want more (I’m certainly guilty of it). That’s why when I see online articles about how to be more successful, healthy, attractive, wealthy…I kind of get mixed emotions.
Recently, I came across this infographic about the habits of wealthy people. It has some useful, worthwhile advice but I couldn’t help but feel like it shamed the rest of us who can’t pick up these habits and practices because we’re too busy struggling to make ends meet. I know this infographic is meant to be motivational, even inspirational, but it comes off to me a little condescending with an “us” versus “them” mentality.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for improving one’s own life – but only if that’s what you truly want, and not what you think you should do, have or be like. With so many different types of social networks we have at our fingertips (literally thanks to smartphones), it’s inevitable that we compare ourselves to our family, friends, coworkers, even strangers. Sometimes that comparison makes us feel bad about our lives and sometimes it can make us feel better because we can say, “At least I have a better job,” or “Thank God I’m not that fat.” But at the end of the day, are we happy?
I guess what I’m trying to say is, don’t let comparison steal away your joy. You’re always going to be ahead or behind than someone else. So the next time you read a story about how this person has achieved something you want or an article that neatly outlines the steps to success, take it for face value. Use the advice for the sake of making yourself a better person and your life more meaningful, not just because you want to look a certain way to others or feel like you need to meet certain expectations to be “successful.”