Sometimes the grass is always greener on the other side: someone else has it better, has more of what you want, and less of what you don’t want. Do you ever look across the fence at the neighbour’s lawn and notice that it is greener and better looking than your own?
When we stand in the middle of our own lawn (our problem) we look outside at how things could be.
We often choose to see the positive aspects of someone else’s existence, and ignore anything that might be wrong with it. And worse, at the same time we are choosing to see the negatives in our own lives and downplaying the positives.
But if you looked after your own lawn, could it be as green as the neighbour’s? Or greener? Can you see the possibility of focusing on your own lawn?
As in lawns, it is in life. Many of us suffer from the “grass is always greener” syndrome.
Inadvertently, to continue the analogy, too much time spent wondering about the neighbour’s lawn leads to neglect of our own. In life, then, we miss out:. The beauty of what we have passes us by. Nothing is ever good enough “here” because our desires are always “there.”
So how can do we realise and appreciate the good on our own side of the fence? We start with daily gratitude!
Here’s a little exercise:
Every night as you lay down to sleep, mentally list off all the things you’re grateful for in your life as it is right now. Not as you wish it would be/could be/should be… but as it is. You can start with the obvious (roof over your head, job, etc. but then make it a point to dig deep into the things that irritate you, frustrate you, upset you. Keep digging until you realise why these things bother you and how they actually enrich you. What are their hidden lessons? What are their hidden blessings?
With this exercise, you are making a conscious choice to see the good in what is. You are learning to choose to see the best in what you have. This sparks a desire to care for what you have…
… and you start watering your lawn…
… until yours is, in your perception, as beautiful if not more beautiful than your neighbour’s. And in fact, you won’t want his lawn anymore, because your own lawn is a labour of love.