Are you always hungry? Hungry for more than what you already have? Hungry for more success, more money, more things, more recognition… Are you always looking to have what others have and…
Do you always want what you can’t have?
I’ll be lying if I said that I don’t feel this way sometimes because I most certainly do and over the years, even though I’ve learned and developed some ways to help me cope with my unwanted feelings of discontentment, now and then I still find myself wanting more than what I already have. I think it’s human nature to have ‘desires’. We aspire to be better, stronger, richer, slimmer, healthier and the list goes on…
When I was in my late teens to early twenties, I wished for many of my dreams to come true and I was fortunate enough to achieve many those dreams. I wanted to sing professionally and I couldn’t believe that I was given an amazing opportunity to sing on the London Palladium stage at the age of 19. I was able to win singing competitions and received awards for my performance art work. So at that time, I thought ‘Great, I’m a professional singer now and…now what?’ Soon after some of my dreams came true, I felt kind of empty inside and to be honest, a little bored. Even after all the awards and recognitions, it felt like my life was still incomplete. I wanted more but I actually didn’t know what I wanted to have more of. After each and every successful project finishing, I was in constant search for the next challenge as if my hunger and thirst had no end. I had no direction and I just overworked myself to exhaustion.
When the money came, I soon realised that it ruined my love for music and singing a little. Singing was always something I did to enjoy myself and it served as my personal way of cathartic release. Some people choose to drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes, but I didn’t because I sang my heart out instead. When singing became a job, I felt even more empty so I decided to take a break from it all. That’s when I realised that I was actually content and happy with my life. What was making me unhappy was my desire to conform and to keep up with other people.
Stop dwelling on the dark side
Instead of looking at things which are wrong and lacking in my life, I realised that I needed to wake up and look at the good things I have. Why do we always look for the wrongs when there are so many rights? Looking at everything that’s going wrong is bound to make you feel sad so stop dwelling on things which you can’t control and start focusing on staying in the beautiful present moment and focus on being excited for your bright future.
Stop yourself from overwork and take a break
Taking a back seat and pausing for a few weeks made me realise that when you take a break to relax, your mind becomes more positive. One time, I was meditating and I realised that I became more positive about my surroundings. I was thinking ‘Wow, I’m so happy I’m relaxed and I’m so grateful to have the space to meditate in my own home.’
Taking some ‘ME’ time is really good for your mental health and when you’re relaxed, you’re not in a constant search for the things you feel you are missing out on.
Stop criticising yourself
This is such a difficult one to shake off because it seems like again, it’s human nature. It’s good to criticise ourselves now and then because that’s how we can start to better ourselves. I mean if we think we’re perfect then what’s the point in trying at all right? There’s a fine balance between constructive criticism and completely destroying your own self-esteem though so go easy on yourself. Always aim to be better but start with a positive ‘I can do this!’ mindset, not with a ‘I’m a loser and I’ll never get better.’ narrative in your head because you defeat yourself before you have even started and you will get nowhere with that attitude my friends.
If you stop criticising yourself, you will start to feel confident which means you start to become happy with who you are. This is when you start realising, ‘Hey, I’m enough.’
Stop comparing yourself to others
This is another big self-esteem sucker in our lives. Why do we compare ourselves to others? I really don’t know but I think there was one study that suggested it’s just human nature to do so as well. I’m definitely going to research into this again for more info on how to combat this feeling of the need to compare. With our social media craze, everyone posts the highlights of their lives and often, we read their highlights as we’re washing and waiting for our laundry to dry. You find yourself sitting there and thinking, ‘Ugh, I have the most boring life.’. Always remember that those people have laundry days too and just like you, they live boring moments too so don’t fret and be happy with who you are because what you feel within is much better than what you see outside.
I don’t compare myself to others anymore and I think it’s just a case of maturity and years of knowing that it really gets you nowhere. If you start wishing for the life they live, well you better want all their baggage too because that’s the reality of life, life comes with plenty of baggage.
Hidden beneath all the beautiful Instagram posts are imperfections so before you think they’re living perfect lives, know that all of us are fighting our own inner battles so focus on your battles because this is your own life; your own journey.
Stop being ungrateful
Whenever we are complaining, we are being ungrateful. We all know that many of us spend a lot of time complaining so a lot of times, we are ungrateful. When we feel like we aren’t thankful for what we have, that’s when the desire to want what we can’t have is at it’s peak. Be grateful for the little things that are in your life. Be grateful for the clean water you get to wash yourself with and drink. Be grateful for the clean air you breathe. Be grateful for the food you eat, your family, your friends and the fact that this morning, the sun has risen for you which means another day has come for you to press re-start and make a change if you need to.
When we’re grateful for the little things we have, we start to enjoy them and we start appreciating their existence in our lives. When you start becoming more grateful, you will soon realise that you don’t need the things you don’t have because you’re more than happy with what you already have.