It’s time to start appreciating the small things in your life and stop the negative thoughts from ruining everything. The what-ifs, the I wants. While fantasy can be fun, it can also be harmful. You need to be realistic. Some things you can’t have, some things are meant to be fiction, some things just aren’t meant for you. Your life is the way it is for a reason, and instead of taking time to dwell on aspects you don’t like or places you’d rather be and jobs you’d rather have, start looking for the beauty in what you do have, the positivity in your everyday life. Start making an effort to enjoy things rather than taking the quick route to hatred and jealousy.
A simple way to do this is to stop comparing your life and what you have to others. No one has a life like the movies, even if Tik Tok and other social media may make it seem that way. Movies and other media were created with the intent to entertain, so it makes sense that the lives and experiences they depict are often unrealistic and unattainable to the ordinary person. How entertaining would it really be to watch the main character go through simple, everyday events? Media producers often try to exaggerate and overcompensate to make the small things a character may go through, seem a whole lot more interesting.
It may be hard to just up and stop comparing your life to others, so instead, you can utilize this act of romanticizing and idealizing ordinary things to make yourself develop a better appreciation for the simple things in your life. A large part of why your life may seem “dull” and “boring” to you, can stem from the fact that you have developed a routine, and go through similar things every day, and are used to the people and other surroundings in your day to day life. So, while the classes you are taking and the things you talk to your parents about, or the meals you can afford to make and the clubs you are involved in, or the way you spend your free time and the clothes you wear may begin to feel old and overused to you, there are people out there, even your friends, who see these things as cool and unique ways to define you. Seeing similar things over and over again does get boring. But a lot of the time we keep doing these things because we enjoy them.
On several occasions, I have found myself guilty of looking at my closet or my pantry and wishing I had more or wishing I had something else. Or I find myself meeting someone with a really interesting major and teetering towards regret for the major I chose (and genuinely enjoy). Instances like these and other times where I have found myself wanting what other people have made me realize that I don’t have an appreciation for the things that I do have and the experiences that I go through. Just because my overnight oats don’t look as pretty as the ones in someone’s Tik Tok on my For You page, doesn’t mean they taste bad. Just because someone else lives in New York, and I live in California, doesn’t mean I’m missing out. I live in California and I like California. I recently had a wake-up call that negative thoughts like these and constantly putting down the things I do have has not been good for my mental health.
Romanticizing your life is as easy as changing your outlook on your life and leads to so much more appreciation and enjoyment. Noticing the small things in nature when you take a walk or ride your bike, or noticing all the colors in the meal you made for dinner, or picking up a hobby that lets you channel your creative desires. All of these things and more can help you to enjoy and appreciate the one life you have a little more, instead of living in constant envy. So, in the spirit of November and Thanksgiving, try to make a bit more of an effort to be grateful for yourself and the life you get to live.