about comparison

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

this post will be an unfinished thought process post.
a post that almost captures what I'm thinking, but seeing as my mind is not fully wrapped around a conclusion -- my words will end, still lingering in the air.

so here we go.

we will start with a quote, that I've played back in my head for years.

"comparison is the thief of joy," said (apparently) theodore roosevelt.

here, abroad, I compare. I can't help but compare.
I compare the food (more expensive but less preservatives),
I compare the children (they get more play time),
I compare the people on the street (why aren't they smiling back at me),

I compare how I am here to how I am at home.

and I think that is the fundamental thief of my happiness.

because I allow myself to compare,
to let my thoughts stop being present,
to compare to my past & to my imaginary future.

I do it in a simple form,
"this healthy dinner does not taste as good as that ten dollar ben&jerry's looked.."
but also in more demeaning ways,

ways that snatch hold of my positivity and warp it into energy that comes out in gasps.

gasps, because the positive energy in my mind is begging me to let go of the comparisons,
gasps, because the little bits of positivity that pop out are let out in rapid forms of expressions -- not the calm, happy energy that I wish to hold in my heart,
gasps, because all good things in my mind and heart are telling me to let it go
let the negativity go.

and yet, it can be so easy to ignore these gasps.
and to let the gasps turn into my own breathing patterns -
not calm. not smooth.

but quick. quick from anxiety that something in my present is not as good
as it was in the past or the future
or as it is for someone else.

I notice this here when I think,

classes are longer and days stretch on, and I feel the need to comment on this, every day, as I sit down for lunch and I've still got three hours left until I can miss the bus and wait another 20 minutes. 

but what if I said:
classes are long. not longer. then I could say, "classes are long, but that's okay, because by the end of the day I can say I put good energy towards learning new things, towards having a new experience."

where is this negativity coming from?

I feel it in comparison.

comparison is the thief of joy, because in all my comparisons, I am taken away from my present thoughts.

and ever-present thoughts -- that is what I am aiming for.

1 comment:

  1. Being 'present' is a battle, there's no other word for it. It's only recently I discovered that my anxiety stems from failing to be present and focusing instead on my past pains and my future fears.

    I know deep down my thoughts aren't justified but something within me always pulls me back to comparison and usually its a comparison between me and the me I thought I would be. Comparisons are indeed the one thing I seem to live by and its only when I (rarely) manage to eradicate them, do I start to feel present and calm.

    Baby steps.