It happened again.
I was feeling at peace with my life. The speeding ticket far behind me. The illness starting to heal itself. Acceptance was beginning to melt like chocolate, thick, rich and beautiful and seeping into anything hard and open.
And then it happened.
Life. It’s the person who’s doing better than you. The mom who seems to be perfect. The family with the bigger house. The friend with a better job. Suddenly, nothing you’re doing is good enough. And that’s not the end point.
The worse thing is when your child looks at you, when you’re staring straight in the face of your husband or your beautiful family, your home, your beautiful body, it’s not good enough. If it’s not good enough, you’re not good enough.
It’s a wretched feeling.
It starts with envy, but it’s an uncomfortable gnawing like the sound of nails on a chalkboard or a turtleneck choking your neck.
You know you should feel happy or use it to motivate you. But there you are.
How do you quell the critical voices in your head?
You keep telling yourself like I did:
“You are good enough.”
“Your life is perfectly imperfect, just the way it should be.”
Your fortune is in your ability to see it. Your happiness is dependent on imbuing the moment with gratitude. What you accomplish is not in direct proportion to your happiness or your worth.
Some people’s life from afar seem shiny and beautiful. They could be. It has nothing to do with you. It has nothing to do with your life.
Don’t wish for their life.
Wish for your life being as grand, as alive, as heartbreakingly profound as it can be.
Don’t skim the surface.
Dig in deep.
Stop throwing away the good things you do for the amazing things someone else did. Stop putting your life alongside another. Stop making what you do who you are.
And embrace it all: your flaws, your contributions, your moodiness, your beautifulness. Pretend you are an outsider looking into your own life. And be envious of yourself…
*I’m busy writing nonfiction articles (like this heartwarming story of an old-time local store in the business of serving people and their pets), an essay and a few fiction pieces. These mini lessons are a slice of soul I hope will inspire you.