I find that I constantly compare myself to others.
I feel inferior for not earning more, not saving more, for not buying my own house. I feel inferior if someone has a higher net worth. I feel inferior if someone has gotten more help from their parents, and if they’ve received less help from their parents. I find myself constantly comparing net worth figures, savings amounts, incomes, expenses, wardrobes.
I have to remember: it’s not a contest.
I don’t have to have the highest net worth, and I don’t have to save the greatest percentage of my income. I don’t have to own my own house if I’m not ready. I can spend more money on clothes than the crazy people on MSN who spend $40/year. I can have an expensive wedding, even if other people think it’s crazy to spend that much on a big day. I can travel, I can go out to bars, and I can spend my money.
I’m not competing with all of you. The only person I am competing with is myself. I should be trying to shave down our utilities, trying to spend less on clothes, and paying down debt. But I shouldn’t be doing this to beat Sally Blogger; I should be doing it to beat my budget – to beat myself.
I can’t be the only one who feels this way sometimes. The vague competitive edge, tinged with envy and feelings of inferiority. I think most of us have a person we look up to, whose savings prowess we are in awe of. So we all need to remember: We do enough. We are enough.
It’s not a contest.