A Matter of Perspective and Course Corrected Logic
How many times do we need to be told that there is always someone worse off than we are so we should cheer up? There are starving children in China so eat your spinach. You have no shoes but someone else has no feet. Your job may not be what you hoped for but at least you have one.
All of these thoughts and sentiments encourage us to find a positive within our negative view of life by comparing ourselves to someone else in a favorable light. Now, I do understand and I admit that, for too many unthinking years, I did use this kind of process to wipe out depressed thinking of one form or another myself. You know, though, when you shine some bright light on that kind of logic, it just might make you feel a little worse. Why? Because you are using someone else’s misfortune to make yourself feel better. Example: I am not beautiful but look at you. You are really homely. Therefore, I feel better about whatever degree of “beauty” I might have. This isn’t the way to become positive.
There must be a better way to resolve this kind of need. Gratitude appears to be the answer. Whatever I have, I am grateful for. I only have a package or a can of soup on my shelf. I am grateful to have it. There is only an apple and some milk in my refrigerator. I am grateful to have it. I have some crackers and a little cereal in my cupboard. I could have the crackers with my soup and the milk with my cereal! How fortunate I am!
We all need to remember that everything in our lives is cyclical. When everything is going my way, it is certain that eventually, it will be someone else’s turn and my options may be less than they are today. So, try to ride it out. Look for the positives even in a very negative picture. What have you learned? How will you do things differently in the future? Have you checked to see if there are resources to help you depending on your circumstances? If you don’t have to go it alone, why do you? Think about that.
While we are at it, there are a few other things to think about. One is expectations and the other is perfectionism. Both can individually or collectively come together to make you miserable. Unrealistic expectations of yourself and others are guaranteed to cause unhappiness. Meditate on that. I expected to _____________ but I didn’t get ______________(fill in your own blanks). My feelings are hurt. What made you expect anything? As for perfectionism, is there any harsher self punishment than this? Perfection by it’s own definition is impossible to achieve. Must you measure yourself against an impossible standard. Every now and again, isn’t “good enough, good enough”? Give yourself a break. Cut yourself some slack. Feel better. Remember, if you are down at this moment, momentum will soon carry you back to the top. It is just one big wheel.
When something has discouraged you, remember:
Moderation in all things and even in moderation, moderation.
Eventually, this too, shall pass.
We don’t need to make ourselves feel better by comparing our situation to someone else’s. Let’s just gain some perspective and rearrange our logic in a more positive way. Now, you can really feel better.