Obsession. An idea or thought that continually preoccupies, or intrudes a person’s mind. Envy. The desire to have a quality, possession, or other attribute belonging to someone else. Worth. The level at which someone or something deserves to be valued. The common derivative between these three little words that so many of us seem to be a bit too familiar with is the vague awareness of comparison.
We function within a society where advertisements drive us to perform some of the most mundane tasks imaginable on a daily basis. Whether it’s selecting a particular shade of lipstick at the corner pharmacy, or adopting the eating habits of a pigeon in order to look just right. But who defines what makes these intangible objects of desire so captivating? And whomever does, are they aware that it’s a crystal clear set up for failure? Ask yourself the question: do I do this to myself?
The blame game. We’re all aware of it, and if you’re not, please feel free to stop reading this article now because you’re clearly operating at a completely different level. Teach us your ways. It’s the easy way out; the back door exit that no one sees you creep out of. By throwing someone else under the bus, whether determined to save your own name, or pass the fiery torch in someone else’s hands, you enable yourself to become off the hook–but only temporarily. In regards to the question of whether or not we’re the ones setting ourselves up for failure, the idea of guilt soon arises.
You map out your spring break preparation plan on a Sunday night. Monday morning comes around, and those chocolate brownie batter pancakes are staring you right in the face, begging you to devour them. You take a bite, enjoy every second, and instantaneously, you’ve ruined your whole day. Remorse. Self-hatred. But why? You just tasted heaven in rich, chocolate form. It’s because our society has meticulously sculpted an insatiable, unquenchable desire to be perfect. And if you want those washboard abs and thighs the size of your forearm, you can forget about submitting to the pleasures of carbohydrates–something your body physically needs.
We dread the effects of pleasing ourselves with consumption. Yet the irony is, we dread the idea of dragging ourselves out of bed and onto the elliptical just as much, if not more. You can scroll through the health and fitness boards on Pinterest one thousand times over, yet the fact of the matter remains that you simply do not. Enjoy. Getting started. Once we trek over to the gym and hop aboard that dreadful AMT or cross-trainer, the countdown begins. Twenty more minutes. Fifteen more minutes. Seriously? Ten more minutes? While of course we walk away feeling like a million bucks, I can’t help but question why we don’t enjoy the things that better our days–like treating ourselves to that extra cookie, or channeling our inner Jill Michaels and whipping ourselves into shape.
Instead of focusing on these overwhelming thoughts of self doubt and thus self worth, begin to submerse yourself with gratitude that you, in that very moment, are doing something for yourself. Whether long term, short term, or just living in that no longer so questionable moment, simply enjoy. And suddenly you’ll find that the key to happiness isn’t swearing off the things you love; but embracing them with moderation, and a smile.
Emily is a 20 year old student at Miami University of Ohio, triple majoring in Mass Communications, Management, and Enjoying-Being-In-Her-Twenties. Her passions include writing, traveling, and laughing, and she plans on continuing to do so for many years to come! Contact Emily at email@example.com.
Emily Binkowski has 5 post(s) on Love Twenty