Comparing ourselves to others is something most of us struggle with. It can be because growing up your parents kept comparing you to others, your achievements were neglected while your siblings’ were celebrated, or you have low self-esteem.
Financial comparison is one of the most common ones out there because it leads to a lot of other things that are often used for comparison. You earning less than someone with the same educational qualification of yours can be one of the many reasons. You earning less than your partner is another one of the leading cause for financial comparison and jealousy.
With social media making it easy to keep a track of others, it’s hard to not compare how well you’re doing financially compared to others.
Others Making More Than You Doesn’t Mean They Save More Than You
One thing that we should always remind ourselves if we fall in the trap of financial comparison is that we don’t know what life people lead. Unless you’ve had the chance to openly compare paycheck stubs, you are not going to have a clear idea of how much someone is making.
If you know that they are making more than you, then chances are that you may start feeling bad for yourself. We often start with thinking about what all we could have done if we earned that amount, we would be able to do more things than we currently can, we could finally buy the things we want, we could go to expensive places, etc. Some people fall so far down the rabbit hole that they try to replicate the lifestyle by living on credit.
What we almost never even stop to consider is that if they are making more money, then chances are that they have more expenses as well. You never know exactly how much someone else makes, that is, the savings after all the expenditure. You are never going to fully know how many financial responsibilities someone has, and if they have debt. If they do, then most of what they earn is spent as soon as it comes. You might still be left with more money to spend than someone who is making more than you.
Another problem that this line of thinking leads to is that people accept the status quo for themselves. Rather than working harder and trying to find money to put aside for whatever they dream of doing if they could have had that amount of money, they just accept their situation and say that it’s easy for people (who earn more) to set money aside because they make good money.
This thought leads you to do nothing to change your situation -all you end up doing is feeling bad about yourself or making excuses for your financial situation.
Even if you know all about them, this happens if you are close to them, every single penny they spend and earn – you still can’t do anything about it. There’s no point in thinking how lucky they are or what you could do with that amount. The only thing you can do is try to change that for you, look for better opportunities and ways to make more.
Comparing yourself to others financially is an exercise in futility because you achieve nothing from it except surrounding yourself with negativity. The only thing you have control over is the way you take things and learn from them. Instead of feeling jealous of someone else’s financial success, try to take motivation from it.