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You Do You, I Do Me



Joined: 1/25/2011
Posts: 210
michness
“Everyone on the Internet, they’re not having as great a time as you think they are."

“I guess people are just cropping out all the sadness..."
-Portlandia

I have a really awful habit of comparing myself, and my life, to others. Of course, social interaction these days isn't what it used to be, so I spend a lot of my time on Facebook comparing my daily activities to my peers' uplifting statuses, beautiful selfies, and dozens of photos of that impulsive, two-week vacation to Alaska they took. By the end of my internet purge, I often feel really crappy about how, dare I say it, boring my life is in comparison.

I went to visit my parents the other weekend, and when they asked the inevitable, "What have you been up to?" question, I shrugged and said, "Oh, not much. Work, sleep, TV, cats." And that's really about it. My weekends are reserved for a fun run, some shopping, and relaxation. My fiance and I aren't really into bars, parties, or karaoke, so we prefer to stay home. But does that kind of preference leave us out of the loop?

I decided to tell my mom, "So-and-so went to Alaska for two weeks. And another so-and-so just left on a trip to visit her sister in Costa Rica. Wouldn't that be amazing?"

My mom wasn't impressed. "They aren't saving money like you are."

"But life isn't about saving money," I insisted, "it's about living, and having fun."

"Then what's stopping you from going?" my mom argued. "You have the money for a round-trip ticket. Or you could go on a cruise right now!"

I had never really thought about it like that. I set such strict rules for myself in terms of work and saving money, that I never really considered that I could, in theory, pack my bags and just go if I really wanted to.

Maybe I'm just looking to justify my insane need to be extremely responsible about every minor aspect of my life, but I guess I could look at it this way: I have more money in the bank than those people ever will. I'm financially independent from my parents, and am planning a fun, budget wedding. And, I know this sounds crazy, but I kind of like being a little tightly wound. It keeps me, and my spending, in check. Otherwise, I'd probably impulse buy those seven, $60 summer dresses I favorited on ModCloth.

I guess, in the end, it doesn't matter how you live your life, as long you are happy with it. Frankly, I don't care if staring at the ceiling or watching paint dry is your favorite thing in the world to do; don't let others' Facebook adventures get you down! After all, maybe while they were scuba diving in the Bahamas, they got stung by a jellyfish and had a really miserable time. Or they took 20 awkward photos before they got that perfect selfie. You won't see that photographic evidence on Facebook!
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Comment by lauren820


Joined: 9/2/2013
Posts: 8
I love this essay! I'm going to share with my high school students. I preach this to my friends all the time when they think their lives don't measure up to their "friends" on FB. I wrote a blog similar to this too.
Posted: Saturday, January 11, 2014 2:04:25 AM
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