“The Ones You’ve Known Longest”

How many times have you seen a celebrity or one of your other followers and wish you looked like them? Maybe a lot of times, maybe a little, or maybe not at all. Either way society has a way of knocking us down by telling us we should look or dress a certain way in order to be beautiful. The easiest way to fall into the trap of comparing yourself to others is through social media. Parents, family members, and friends can also compare us to our siblings or others knowingly and unknowingly. A recent incident happened with myself and my aunt. I told her that I was possibly thinking about transferring to another school and she told me “And you know you not gon’ get any money” about how my friend did not receive any money for the school that I am looking at and I responded with “Well, that’s her.” Then she proceeded to tell me that my friend’s sister did not receive any money from Spelman (mind you that’s not even the school that I am considering) then I responded with “Well, that’s them”. My biggest issue was not what she said it, it was how she said it. But honestly, if you ask me, it was wrong from the beginning for her to compare me to other people. I am sure she did not realize it but my feelings were still hurt by how she said it. Now yes, if that is how she felt she is entitled to her own opinion but at the same time, please watch what you say to everyone especially how you say it. I am glad that I am the way that I am with a go-getter mindset because if I did not have that mindset, I could have gave up on even applying to that school.

Moral of the story: We need to stop comparing people to others and others to ourselves. This creates major insecurities and can lead to depression (if the problem is not addressed and fixed). Make sure that you are not comparing yourself to others on social media because a picture only shows a quick second of their life. You can look at a celebrity and wish you had their life and looked like them but in all honesty you have no idea of what they could be going through personally, dealing with all of the cameras in their face, limited amounts of sleep, and not having enough time for their children. Be careful what you wish for :).

5 Replies to ““The Ones You’ve Known Longest””

  1. I totally agree with your observation that we should not compare anyone with anybody else. All it does is create insecurities and make you feel insecure that you will not do well in life. Everyone has its own capabilities and skill set which can be used in a different environment. The only thing people need to do is to find the hidden skill in yourself and embellish it to get going on the success path. Never compare yourself to anyone and feel downgraded. I have such an experience in my life where I have compared my grades to my high achiever friend with 16 AP courses and only felt degraded and lower my self-esteem. It is about what I am good at and not what the others can do?
    So feel proud of what you are good at and find success on that path.

  2. I can relate to this so much. When I was about fifteen years old, I had the “perfect” body. I was skinny, toned from playing softball, slim waist, thicker thighs but I still felt like I wasn’t “pretty enough” or what all the boys wanted. When I quit softball after playing travel ball for eight years, it triggered my PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) and I gained sixty pounds in only a year. I felt awful about myself. I felt miserable and depressed because I wasn’t the skinny girl that I used to be. I had to buy all new clothes and in the meantime my mother would always make comments to me about how I “need to go to the gym to get back to my old figure” and “do you really want to look like that in a bathing suit” and “we ordered pizza for us but I made you a salad for dinner”. I don’t think she realized how much that hurt to hear my own mother talk down on me like I wasn’t beautiful anymore because of my body. She still makes comments about my weight gain that was uncontrollable but I have learned to let some of it go in one ear and out the other. Other times I tell her that it isn’t nice for her to speak about me and to me like I am not enough anymore. Anyways, best of luck to you!

  3. I like the message behind this post. It is so easy to compare ourselves to people that we see on social media which can translate on how we look at ourselves in our own lives. You might walk past someone and say “oh I wish I had that” or “why can’t I have those” etc. It is really unhealthy and like you said can very easily lead to depression if not controlled. I agree that people should be careful, especially family members of what they say and how they say because you never know how the other person might take it or what they are dealing with.

  4. I really like the message you are giving in this post. I know everybody struggles with insecurities and it is hard seeing others on social media that look completely unflawed. It’s hard constantly comparing yourself to others or getting compared to family and friends. Personally, my grandparents always compare me to my cousin because she just graduated pharmacy school, is married, and is the perfect grand daughter. They don’t understand that engineering school is also difficult, just in a different way. However I have to remind myself that I am doing this for me, because this is what I want to do. It’s hard to stick to your goals when others put you down about them.

  5. I definitely agree, and I have passed a period of time that I like to compare my life with others. It was during high school, and I was jealous of one of my friends. Since daily life, she posts on her Instagram looks so interesting(she travels all the time). And I don’t understand why she is so good at taking the picture. Therefore during that time, I was unhappy about my life every day. But later on, I figure out this is not right. I am wasting my time and my feeling of jealousy other people’s lives that don’t belong to me. So what I chose to do is to upgrade myself and let other people feel “jealous” to me. In the past three years, I learned how to do makeup, how to match my daily outfit and how to be a better graphic designer. And the result is I get more follower on Instagram and people start to say why are you so good at taking the picture. So don’t just wish, do it.

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