No Life Is Better Than Your Own

Paul Cantor
2 min readFeb 12, 2018

People say the internet and social media contribute to the outgrowth of depression and anxiety in society today.

I don’t know what people, exactly, but — you know — you can google that shit. It’s an almost universally-accepted theory by now.

And, I think it’s easy to see why.

You got your phone in your hand, you can easily open up Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat — boom, immediately, someone is doing something you’re not doing, and you feel… well, you feel a little bit like a loser. That is, unless you’re doing something too.

But even if you’re doing something, someone else’s something is always better than your something. I kind of liken it to high school. There’s the pack of cool kids having all their fun, doing wonderful stuff on the weekends, and then there’s you.

Why can’t I be doing that?

It’s only when you get older, and you learn that the cool kid group actually peaked in high school — the prom queen is an under-employed waitress, the quarterback works at a gas station — things begin to make sense.

There’s really only one life that matters. Your life. And the people in it. You can spend a lifetime looking at things outside of yourself, believing they are better than what you already have, but the truth is the complete opposite.

There are #goals, of course. We should always have benchmarks we are trying to hit, places we want to see, lives we are trying to have. But, we should also be incredibly grateful for the lives we’re already living. Even if it’s just waitressing or working at the local gas station. There’s beauty and life in that too.

Paul Cantor

Wrote for the New York Times, New York Magazine, Esquire, Rolling Stone, Vice, Fader, Vibe, XXL, MTV News, many other places.