2 years ago · lizzie · 0 comments
Do You Engage In “Grass Is Always Greener” Thinking?
When you engage in “grass is always greener” thinking, you are rarely satisfied and always looking forwards or backwards, assuming life is better ….over there. This type of thinking leaves you feeling frustrated, unhappy and constantly searching for something external to bring you happiness.
If you engage in these types of thoughts on a regular basis, it is highly lightly you are engaging in grass is always greener’ thinking:
- “things will be better when…”
- “if only I had [xxx], then I’d be happier”
- “when I get [xxx], then my life will be easier”
- “things were better before this”
This type of “grass is always greener” thinking style leaves you feeling very dissatisfied with life. It also welcomes too much upheaval into your life as you pursue happiness in the form of change. Lastly it creates low self-esteem because you no longer learn to trust your instincts and easily question decisions that you finally make. This makes it very stressful for you and for those around you. You regularly break promises, disappoint and change your mind to satisfy your insecurities and hope that new decisions will ultimately lead to happiness.
Despite all these negative arguments, MANY people engage in the “grass is always greener” thinking style.
Has the “grass is always greener” thinking style held you back?
Think about your life this past week in your life. How many times did you think to yourself that life would be better if something changed? Yet, how many changes have you made and how many goals have you achieved over the course of your life? Do you recognise these achievements, relish in them and feel happier – long term – as a result? The problem with “grass is always greener” thinking style, is that it leaves you constantly dissatisfied. You feel happier for a moment when you achieve yor desires, but this happiness is only short lived and you soon look for (and find) problems with this outcome. This negative thinking then creates a dissatisfaction with your current situation and you search for change again.
Good example of “grass is always greener” thinking, include when:
- you search for a new relationship, but soon find problems within it
- you buy a new car and soon crave a newer/shinier model
- you move to a new location and soon pine over the old one you used to complain about
Are you convinced yet that the “grass is always greener” thinking style is NOT good for your health?
What if you learnt to trust your instincts and relish if your achievements and desires? Imagine how much more enjoyment you would gain from your life, if you consciously decided to STOP engaging in this negative thinking style. Let’s look at an example.
EXAMPLE: Engaging in “grass is always greener” thinking
You are feeling unhappy at work. You begin to engage in the “grass is always greener” thinking. You tell yourself, you will be so much happier if you just get out of there. You spend every effort to move into a new job. You settle into your new job, but soon the same personalities begin to annoy you. You soon begin to feel just as agitated and dissatisfied as you did before you left your last position. In fact, you begin to look back with rose coloured glasses to find positives in the job you just left behind. You feel very dissatisfied and start looking for a new job again.
EXAMPLE 2: Curbing “grass is always greener” thinking
You are feeling unhappy at work. You begin to engage in the “grass is always greener” thinking. You tell yourself, you will be so much happier if you just get out of there. You stop yourself and you begin to question what your dissatisfaction is really about. Are you unhappy with the work location, the hours you’re putting in, the work you’re undertaking, your pay scale, or the people you’re working for? You pinpoint what’s going on. You’re feeling undervalued. You decide to have a meeting with your boss to discuss the issue, but you do not feel much better after your meeting. You decide to look for a new position, but you focus on looking for a job where your skills will really be valued and you can shine. You project this through the interviews you sit and you finally secure a job that provides you with that validation you have been missing. You settle into your new job and begin to thrive. You leave that “grass is always greener” thinking style behind and feel so much happier. You love your new job.
The key difference in both these examples is questioning WHY you might be engaging in “grass is always greener” thinking. Most likely, there is something underpinning this thinking tendency. When you identify what is really going on, you can address the issue at hand and stop yourself from looking for change to make you happier.
But isn’t change as good as a holiday?
They say “change is as good as a holiday” and this is true. You feel great when you go on that holiday, but very soon after you return, life goes back to normal. If you were feeling dissatisfied before – you will feel dissatisfied again. The holiday does not fix any internal issues, it just helps you to ignore them for a while. Whilst this is a nice distraction, it’s not the way to resolve personal issues, because they are all there waiting for you when you return. The change, just gives you a break. It does not make you happier long term if you continue to search for happiness externally to yourself. The first place to start building your happiness is internally, but focussing on building your self esteem. Then, you will be in control of your life and your destiny.