5 Reasons Why the Grass Isn’t Always Greener

June 15, 2015

I think it’s a pretty natural thing for most humans to compare themselves with one another.

It is, after all, why the adage keeping up with the Joneses came to be in the first place. We don’t want to be left out of anything, we desire to be apart of the “in” crowd and covet notoriety within our circles. However, these impulses are often accompanied with jealousy, envy and unhappiness because we feel as if we are lacking in [fill in the blank], missing out on ____ and inexperienced because of {?}.

And even though you’ve heard it at least a hundred times, the grass really isn’t greener on the other side. In other words, what you do and who you are is not less than the girl sitting on the other end of the college classroom, inferior to the man in the cubicle across from yours or second-rate to the person who won’t talk to you for whatever reason.

We are called to live intentionally, to be intentional, to focus on living life like Christ, not like the Jonses.

Here are five reasons why the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and why your life is perfectly wonderful in spite of, well, life.

1. Point of view.

Have you ever noticed that depending on your angle, the variation of color, size or clarity can often be quite extreme? What you see from far away isn’t always reality. When you move closer to the object it often changes in shape, color and/or size. And what happens when you see something in your peripheral vision? As soon as its moved to focus, or center, of vision, chances are pretty great that it’s completely different than what you had originally expected. It’s called perspective.

2. Circumstantial evidence.

Have you ever looked back on your life and thought Wow, I had it really great in that season — but I thought it was so difficult! It’s like browsing through photo albums from high school and realizing that you actually were quite skinny even though you vividly remember obsessing about your weight. It’s not what you thought it was; similarly, what looks so hard or impossible in your life right now may could just use with a big does of reality check. Maybe what you’re seeing on that other green lawn is someone making the best of her own situation — you never know what the circumstances surround the success really are.

3. Happiness is relative –

and completely non-related to life’s choices because happiness is a choice within itself. So you had a bad day? Tons of other people did too. You can either have serious road rage on the way home from work or you can release the tension and anger by blasting your choice of feel-good music and singing at the top of your lungs. Make your own happy happen.

4. What you see isn’t always what you get.

Take your barista’s golden locks, for example: her copper roots are starting to show underneath the platinum braids. What’s on the outside shows one thing when the inside really could be breaking to little pieces. And while that seems slightly morbid, it’s true. Everyone has hurts, everyone has a past. We have become professionals at hiding our hearts and feelings within is to project a certain image we believe other people expect of us. So stop looking on the surface of other people’s smiles — you might realize that you would rather keep your past and look to your future in exchange for the pain the one you envy has experienced.

5. Each life is created equally but not identically.

Your story is as essential to the world’s awakening as the girl’s on Instagram that you stalk. Your life is as necessary to the beauty as even the wispy greenery is to a bouquet of flowers. Yes, the roses may get all the actual attention, but what would that flower be by itself? It’s the the whole bouquet that is truly gorgeous, no one piece of it being more important than the next. Take pride in your individuality and know that when you are together with other women that you have more power as a group than you ever would by yourself.

The grass isn’t always greener on the other side … it might just be a different shade of green from where you’re standing.

this article originally appeared on Coast to Coast Central Blog.