When Comparisonitis Hits Home…Literally

Pink velvet chairs

Comparisonitis – a term most commonly used to describe comparing your life to those on social media. We hear so much talk about comparing our bodies to others, comparing our financial situation, our jobs, our travels, but recently I’ve been hit with a different kind of comparisonitis.

Comparing my home.

Before I get into that, let’s put this post into perspective for a second. There are people who literally don’t have a roof over their head, so, in the grand scheme of life, I understand this is trivial. But just take this post with the pinch of salt it was intended to be served with and see ifyou can relate on some level.

The interiors community, especially that on Instagram, is amazing. Filled with inspiration, new products, brands you might never have heard of, styling tips – you name, Instagram will show it.

Except the reality. We very rarely see that.

And truth be told, recently I’ve found myself dropping down a deep, dark hole of, “look how light filled that house is, why doesn’t my flatphotograph like that”, “I wish I had someone who could help me with DIY likethat”, and “look at the size of her front room, I wish mine looked like that”.

Like that, like that, like that.

Want to know a secret? I only decorated my living room recently because I was tired of having the one room – my office – to shoot in. When yourfull-time job is based around interior design, there are only so many times youcan photograph one spot at a different angle without people thinking, OK we getit love, you’ve got fancy wallpaper.

So out came the white paint, and to be honest, away went the pressure of not feeling good enough for social media. For a while at least.

I never thought I’d be the sort of personality that would feel driven to spend money she doesn’t really have, decorating a room she didn’t really need to, all because of the pressure she felt social media. But I was. And I’m ashamed to admit that openly.

I wonder how many other people out there decorate with Instagram in mind. I bet I’m not the only one, and, unfortunately, I know I won’t be the last. While we’re being completely transparent, I’ve been known to spend hours on Right Move looking for flats to rent that have better kitchens. How stupid is that.

The thing about platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest, however, is that in reality, we know it’s all smoke and stylish mirrors. The hashtag #Instareality proves that. We don’t see the kid’s toys or the multipack of toilet roll, the stains on the rug, or the lopsided canvas that hasn’t been hung correctly. We know that. Just like we know the influencer on your grid doesn’t have skin that flawless or a waist that snatched.

But it’s still very easy to get bogged down in comparing your own 2-bed flat, with magnolia walls and an 80s kitchen, to the 5-bedroom mansion on your phone screen.

So how do we stop comparisonitis?

I think with a little perspective as mentioned above. I might not be in a position where I have a magazine-worthy home at the moment or have the money to be able to decorate just how I’d like, but I do have a pretty gorgeous apartment that’s filled with cat hairs, magnolia walls, and zero neighbours to worry about hearing my singing.

My renovations are still to come. Just like my snatched waist and flawless skin is. 

In case you missed it: 10 Easy Organic Cleaning Recipes | Stylish Lighting For Your Small Home Office | Decorating My Open Plan Living Room

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4 Comments

  1. 11.19.18
    Lizi said:

    I’m the worst at doing this. I know full well that I can’t afford to overhaul my flat and yet I’ll sit judging how it looks compared to the instagram perfect homes of others. It’s so frustrating when other homes look beautiful and even when they’re beaut but not my taste, I’m still jealous?! I definitely need to stop comparing myself. xx

    • 11.19.18

      Yes! Even when it’s not my taste, I still find myself doing it! We need to stop comparing and start enjoying what we do have 🙂 It’s Insta-perfect to us! xx

  2. 11.20.18
    Hannah said:

    Thanks so much for writing this up, this is literally my life. I’m so glad I’m not the only one!

  3. 11.22.18
    Tina said:

    This is why I started the hashtag #hidbythegrid – I didn’t know about #instareality, but will be using both for posts that fit.

    Now that I’ve painted, I can finally take pictures anywhere and be okay with it (sad, but true), whereas it was always in one place before too. We think its silly, but the fact is, it looks better and makes us feel better so even if it wasn’t for Instagram, I’m happy I have this space now. I think sometimes it’s good for me to compare and get a push to do something, but there has to be a balance xx