The Whole Picture

You are aware of your life in a way that is impossible for the lives of others. Whenever you compare all of your life to only a specific aspect of someone else’s, that comparison will be flawed.

If look at your life, with all its struggles, and compare it to only the best part of someone else’s, you’ll feel inadequacy and jealousy – whether that’s a peer or your own grandfather. You’ll see their nice house and assume their life was entirely better, but clearly, this is wrong.

Likewise, if you look only at a single poor decision in someone else’s life, it’s easy to feel superior. It’s easy to feel like you’d never make that decision, never fall into that trap. This too is clearly wrong.

Without the whole picture, without the struggles and pains and thorns and mud, you can’t just pluck these little moments and slot them into your own life seamlessly. Be wary of those moments when your brain tries to do so anyway. There are plenty of lessons to be learned from the lives of others, but those lessons are only valuable to extent that you test them incrementally in your own.

Other people’s lives are not the yardstick of yours.

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