Forget Instagram. You do you

I’m sick of Instagram.

I’m sick of comparing myself to everyone else I see there. Iphone 410311 1280

I’m sick of thinking that #livingmybestlife has anything at all to do with what @Influencer123 thinks (aka, preaches).

I’m sick of competing.

I’m sick of flipping through other people’s photo streams and feeling envious about what I see.

I’m sick of asking, “Why isn’t that my life?”

I’m sick of thinking, “If I only had a little more money… if I only traveled a little more… if I only was better at [Insert Extreme Sport Here]… I’d be happier.”

Forget Instagram

You know what would make me happier?

Spending less time on Instagram.

So why not just do that?

The truth is, constantly yearning for more won’t make you happy.

That’s called an addiction, and we all know how those work.

You end up a servant to the thing you desire.

What Instagram addicts us to is a squirmy uncomfortable little emotion called envy—a cruel master if ever there was one.

But this isn’t really about Instagram.
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I repeat, the thing you’re addicted to is envy… not Instagram.

Quitting Instagram is a good start, but it’s not the end goal.

The end goal is breaking the envy addiction.

The way to do that, of course, is incredibly simple (which is not to say easy).

Quit wanting more, and instead, be thankful for what you’ve got.

Again, I’m not saying that’s easy.

But there are ways to do this.

Make a list each morning of 10 things you are grateful for. Donate to charities.

Try to remember the last time you went 24 hours without food or water. 18306043_l

Write a letter to a friend or relative who recently lost a loved one.

There will always be someone with more than you to be envious of.

But the other side of that coin is that there will always be someone with less than you to remind you how good you have it.

The key, of course, is not to focus on either.

Feeling better than someone else is just as toxic as feeling worse.

So forget Instagram.

Forget comparing yourself to others, period.

Get quiet, get focused, and ask yourself, “Do I have enough?”

Take your time and really be honest.

If the answer is no, figure out what you’re lacking and try to come up with a way to improve your situation.

If the answer’s yes, say thank you and move on.

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Carl Richards

About

Carl Richards is a Certified Financial Planner and a columnist for the New York Times, Morningstar magazine and Yahoo Finance. He is author of 2 books, The Behavior Gap & The One-Page Financial Plan. Carl lives with his family in Park City, Utah. You can find his work and sign up for his newsletter (which has an international audience) at www.behaviorgap.com/


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