We All Struggle
We all struggle each in our own unique ways. From the outside, it may be hard for others to see that struggle, but inside, we all know it’s there. In that sense, it becomes all the more important not to judge others based on their appearance or life because we don’t know their struggle. We aren’t with them every waking hour of the day, following them around, and reading their mind. We have no idea what they could be struggling with every day!
This is also all the more difficult with the rise and growth of social media. We are constantly surrounded by words and images portraying other peoples’ “best-selves,” when in actually, we aren’t seeing their true reality!
We aren’t seeing their daily struggle.
We aren’t seeing the internal battles they may be fighting.
We don’t know their life based solely on the exterior.
Then, when we start to compare ourselves to this perception that we create about other people, we set ourselves up for failure. We may start to think of ourselves as failure because we haven’t achieved what another person has. Yet, this comparison is not fair; we don’t know how long it took that person to get where he/she is!
Personally, I struggle with this idea in general. I have the tendency to judge people outright based on their appearance or the way I think they live their lifestyle, when in actuality, I have no right to do so! I do not want the same judgement reciprocated back onto me, so why should I allow myself to think those judgmental thoughts?
Often, I also compare myself to another’s life: why can’t I look like them or have what they have?? But again, I don’t know their struggle. I don’t know how hard they work (or don’t work!) every single day. I am simply basing my perception of them based on what I see, not what I truly know to be true.
When this way of thinking is engrained in our minds, it is all the more difficult to break out of the cycle! What I’ve found most helpful is to surround myself with positive, non-judgmental people. They help me catch my judgmental thoughts early before I can let them grow and develop. In addition, employing a certain level of mental awareness is crucial. In order to change our thinking patterns, we need to change our brain chemistry, which takes time and effort every single day!
Now, this isn't going to be easy (is anything ever easy??!), but when you make the conscious effort to refrain from judging and realize that your perception of someone isn't reality, I know you will notice a difference in how you view yourself and others.