Don’t Compare Your Life to Someone’s Highlight Reel

Don’t Compare Your Life to Someone’s High-Light Reel“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you.”
Lao Tzu

Today I’d like to focus on a negative habit that creates insecurity within, erodes self-esteem and can make you feel quite unhappy with your own life.

It’s something that has sprung up as we have moved a part of our lives on to the internet and social media.

And that habit is to compare yourself and your life to other people’s highlight reels.

What do I mean by that?

That it’s so easy to start comparing your life to the lives of friends, old classmates or celebrities of all sizes as you each day see how perfect their homes, kids, love lives are and how filled their lives are with wonderful moments.

But is that their whole lives that is shared on Facebook and Instagram?

Usually not.

It's just the highlight reel of that person’s life. The positive moments.

And it’s natural thing really, to want to share such moments or days with your friends or followers.

Now, for some people this may develop into something destructive.

Into a way of creating a more perfect image of one’s life to get that hit of instant gratification as people add positivity via comments, likes and upvotes.

But everyone has problems at times.

They fail. Get sick. Have flaws, bad days or negative habits.

No matter who you are or what you look like or do.

I have those issues too. Just like anyone else.

I still stumble and fall on some days. Doubt myself or am pessimistic from time to time. That’s human.

So don’t strive for being perfect or measuring yourself against someone else’s highlight reel.

Here are three healthier steps you can take instead:

Step 1: Compare in a smarter way. 

There will always be people who have more or nicer things than you.

Or are better than you at something. No matter what you do.

So if you want to compare then do it in a way that won't make you feel envious and inferior.

Do it by comparing yourself to yourself. See how far you have come. Look back at the obstacles you have overcome, what you have learned and how you have grown.

Step 2: Spend your energy and time on what matters the most. 

Step by step spend the hours in your day and week on building habits that will make you a better person and a happier one too.

For example, aim at being optimistic 70% of the time if you have been it maybe 50% in the past month.

Or spend more of your weekly free time on your favorite hobby or on sharpening a valuable skill. 

Step 3: Let go of what drags you down. 

If necessary unsubscribe or remove social media accounts from your flow if you feel they are dragging you down and lowering your self-esteem. Even if those things might also be entertaining right now.

Life isn't just a highlight reel no matter who shares it.

So look beyond that, remember that everyone is human and stop comparing yourself to that limited view of someone.

In the long run you’ll be happy that you did.


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101 comments… add one
  • Wow I really like that quote by Lao Tzu!

    I think that comparing can be beneficial if the result of comparing inspires you and pushes you to be the best version of yourself.

    If the outcome results in insecurity and thoughts of inadequacy, that’s comparing gone wrong.

  • Anonymous

    thank you

  • Abhishikha

    I use one more technique- if I find myself comparing with a better and growing person I quickly think of a person who is struggling in life or facing sickness. That reassures me that at least I am in a better position than that man so why to be upset.

  • Olia

    If we think about our own posts – we want to share our happiness or sadness, include people in our life, not write with the intention of making someone feel bad. So do others.

    What made me see social media in a completely different way was thinking that people whom we envy or admire might be sharing because of exactly the same reasons – feeling insecure, depressed, failures.

  • Nikki

    Really nice and helpful blog

  • What made me see social media in a completely different way was thinking that people whom we envy or admire might be sharing because of exactly the same reasons – feeling insecure, depressed, failures.

  • I really like “Compare in a smarter way.” If we can’t stop comparing, let’s compare with ourselves!

    This reminds me of an important lesson I heard elsewhere. Don’t focus on the GAP- how far away you’re with your goal. Focus on the GAIN – How far you’ve come from your starting point. Then you’d naturally feel happy.

  • Wow a great post
    Helpful for every person


    Sometimes we get caught up and lose track of what matters most. I see time and time again, confused people who are unaware of what makes them happy.
    Doing superficial things will only be a momentary fix, not a long term solution.
    I really hope more people find their unique “happy place” and stop following trends.

  • Jayraj

    Really interesting and a frame of great work. Would you guys like to read my blog where I try to inspire people and also help to balance emotions of people through poetries and podcasts, but as I’ve just started so my blog doesn’t contain any podcasts yet but I promise to post soon….plz have a visit

  • The information you have posted is very useful. Very nice blog. Thank you for this very helpful information. Looking forward to more.

  • I read a lot of blog posts!! This is great content work.

  • I compare myself all the time to others and even though I know that social media is the highlight, mostly the good things and what they want us to see, it is still so hard sometimes to let it go. But being myself and no one else is what keeps me going

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