Halloween: The only day where you should pretend to be someone else

Halloween is one day each year where you can pretend to be someone you're not.

For me, I'm being my favorite red-haired character -- Ariel from "The Little Mermaid," of course, complete with the green fins and purple shells.

This year, Miley Cyrus, in her barely-there teddy bear outfit from the MTV Video Music Awards, is the most popular costume.

But for some people, every day they wish they were somebody else. They see others' lives as "better" than their own and wish their lives were more like that.

It's easy to say, "Just be yourself. Wanting to be someone else is a waste of time." But for someone who's in an abusive relationship, someone who can't afford basic neccessities such as food, someone who is constantly bullied, or someone who has never felt loved, it's easy to be envious of those who don't have to go through these things.

If you lost your job, how do you keep from wishing you were, instead, the neighbor down the street who owns a mansion?

But know that even those who seemingly have everything also spend much of their time comparing themselves to others. Even they, at times, wish they were someone else.

As perfect as a life may seem on the outside, we don't know what their life is like behind closed doors. Why else would so many models, who we all see as beautiful, be anorexic? Why else would so many celebrities, who we envy, be addicted to alcohol or drugs? Their lives are obviously not perfect.

I've always liked this quote by author Regina Brett: "If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back."

Others may read that quote, roll their eyes and think, "I would gladly take other people's problems over my own."

 But life is not always fair. Those who deserve a million dollars may be broke and those who are corrupt may have money coming out the wazoo. Those who are kind on the inside may hate the way they look on the outside while someone considered "beautiful" is a selfish and cruel person on the inside. And someone who treats everyone with kindness may be in a relationship with an abusive man or woman who treats him or her with anything but respect. While, at the same time, a cheater may be in a relationship with an unsuspecting partner who treats him or her like a king or queen.

 We don't have a magic genie in a lamp where we can *poof* magically become someone else — even if you do dress up like Aladdin this Halloween. And if you keep envying others and keep constantly wishing for another's life, this will just hurt you even more in the long run.

Instead, like the website Smart Fem suggests, work each day on becoming the best you can be. Work toward your own goals instead of wishing you had someone else's life. Run away from an abusive relationship instead of being envious of someone else's love life. And join a group or an extracurricular activity to meet friends, instead of being jealous of those who are "popular.

When you look at someone else's live and feel yourself becoming the green-eyed monster, stop and think, "Why does it matter what their life is like? They're not me." Focus on the here and now and, every day, count your blessings instead of focusing on what you feel like your life is lacking. 

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