We’ve all heard the expression “The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side” throughout our lives, and I actually find it to be a useful mantra whenever I start feeling sorry for myself. It is so easy to lose sight of our blessings and develop a jaded perspective, particularly when we’re faced with examples of the situations we do not find ourselves in.
I was (again) reading Your Life. Live it. Love it. recently, and a particular chapter really resonated with me. A passage called “The Grass is Always Greener Right Under Your Feet” serves as an awesome reminder of just how powerful our own perspective can be when it comes to our happiness.
My life is full of examples of “what ifs” and “if onlys” and I’d like to share a few with you to see if you can relate. I’ll take a peer over into my world from the perspective of someone with beautiful, free, single, wealthy, independent and uninhibited grass.
And then I’ll tell you why I don’t give a damn about their green grass!
I got married when I was young and straight out of college. If I wouldn’t have tied myself down, I could have spent the last nine years living an independent and free lifestyle. I could have experienced relationships with many different women, spent a lot of fun times with my buddies and probably improved my golf game considerably.
I could have traveled extensively and experienced all that the world has to offer. Incredible opportunities for wealth and entrepreneurial success would have been mine for the taking, and I could have taken part in all of the amazing adventures that I have only read about in books.
I have two small children and one on the way. The sacrifices that my children require in time and loss of independence are really incalculable. The constant pressure and burden of providing for their every need is really stressful, and it makes it very difficult to care for myself and experience any truly free time.
My kids also cost a lot of money. Their childcare costs alone would allow me to live in a house that costs more than twice my current home. If I didn’t have the ongoing expenses associated with their food, clothing, entertainment and activities, I would have amassed a very nice nest egg by now. And I’d be driving a sweet ride that didn’t require car seats.
I have a lot of stress in my life that is caused by all of the things I choose to do as a “responsible adult.” Aside from spending a lot of time with my wife and children, I have a full-time professional career, a growing blog (about marriage of all things), church activities, community service and commitments of time to my extended family and friends.
If I instead lived at home with my parents and spent my time doing only the things that I enjoy, I would have an incredibly flexible and stress-free lifestyle. I could drink beer and play video games late into the night, and I’d be able to take a trip to Vegas or go on a ski trip in the Rockies at the drop of a hat.
I would have the life that poor schmucks with a 9-to-5, a mortgage and tee-ball coaching duties can only dream about.
If only…I’d have a great life!
I love my life.
When you peer over a proverbial fence and look at my yard with a judging eye, you’re likely to see some rough patches, some areas that have been neglected for lack of time and several crazy kids running around making a lot of noise. My property isn’t as large as some, and it has some fences around it that may make others feel a bit trapped.
But it’s my grass, and it represents all that makes life so precious in my world.
The grass will always look greener on the other side…and I don’t give a damn.
Instead, I thank God for every beautiful blade of grass that I find on our side of the fence.
Can you relate?
What part of your “lawn” do you love even though others may view it as weeds?
Please share your thoughts in the comments!Photo by Geoff Penaluna
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.