Wednesday, May 8, 2013

May Day 8: My favorite advice

Today's prompt: A piece of advice you have for others. Anything at all.

One of the favorite pieces of advice I’ve received (and I can’t take credit for it) is that you shouldn't compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.
Let me explain. It’s common for us to look at others’ lives and feel a bit of envy sometimes – about a job, a relationship, material possessions. It’s easy to look at someone else and think they're "so lucky", but we have no way of truly understanding the battles they’re fighting (or have fought in their journey to where they are today). But that’s a different (yet equally wise) piece of advice.

What I’m trying to get to is that it’s easy to look at someone’s life and think “I want that.” But everyone is at different stages in life. When Sean and I were dating and I wanted desperately to get engaged. I was sad every time I heard of someone getting engaged. But how can I compare our relationship path to anyone else’s? Ultimately, it wasn’t about someone else getting there first. We all get “there” when we’re ready in our lives to get there. It’s unfair to compare our milestones in life to those in anyone else’s life because those milestones are unique to each of us. Our paths, our journeys, are the way they are because that’s how it’s meant to be.

It doesn’t mean it won’t still sting a little when you find yourself a little jealous of something. And it doesn’t mean you can’t still wish for things in your life that you see in others’ lives. This, I believe, is a natural part of life that is common for many of us.

But what this advice meant to me was that I have to try harder to look within my own life and be thankful, and not let the pressures of envy or desire distract me from contentment. We all fight battles and have thinsg to stress about, but we also all have a lot of things to be grateful for, too. Happiness isn't always ahead of us - in the goals and dreams we hope to achieve. It's right here in front of us, too. And at least for me, that was advice I really needed to hear - to embrace the happines in my own here and now.


1 comment:

  1. This is so spot on! I love it. I get envious a lot, but my dad told me something once that I think about, which is that everyone was once a beginner. If I'm jealous of a certain photographer, I just remember that at one point they didn't know what they were doing either. It's such a great reminder to just do what you can where you're at.