Do not downplay your own successes. Avoid the trap of focusing all your attention on the negatives in your life. There are many ways in which we succeed in our daily life. Celebrate and remember your accomplishments, even those that may seem small or inconsequential. Remember, someone else is probably looking at you with envy.
Be grateful. Almost everyone is able to find something in their life to be thankful for and appreciate. However, even the most fortunate individuals can forget to be grateful for what they have. Try keeping a daily gratitude journal and write down at least one thing every day that you are thankful for and spend a few moments feeling grateful.
Avoid comparing yourself to anyone else. No two lives are the same. Everyone’s story is different. Comparing your own life to someone else’s is a pointless endeavor. Trying to live up to or exceed someone else’s accomplishments is often a losing game. Remember... something you consider a success in another person’s life does not – and should not – reflect any kind of failure upon your life. Focus on what you have achieved in the unique story you are living and with the cards you have been dealt in life.
Focus less attention on other people’s lives. Other people’s lives can seem so perfect, especially in today’s superficial world of social media. Research suggests that heavy use of social media can produce exaggerated feelings of envy and lower self-esteem. Keep in mind that most people only “advertise” the positives in their lives and do not share their problems, missteps, or losses. If you find yourself feeling down after a social media session, maybe it is time to take a break.
Work on building up feelings of self-esteem. You are the only you in the world. That fact alone makes you special. Be who you are and try to become your own personal cheerleader and biggest fan. Make a list of your positive qualities and acknowledge them regularly. Think positive thoughts and speak to yourself with positive, encouraging messages. If there is something in your life you need to change, set out to change it.
Acknowledge envious feelings and move on. Let yourself feel jealous and even sorry for yourself, but don’t wallow in those feelings. Very often, when we hold on to feelings of jealousy for too long, they can swell into resentment and bitterness. Focus on something positive instead. Find something in your own life that brings you joy and concentrate on that.
The word envy is defined as “the feeling of wanting to be like someone else or have what they have.” Most people shy away from admitting to feeling envious, but… really, let’s face facts… we all experience a little envy now and then. Feelings of envy or jealously are part of human nature.
It is completely normal and natural to feel a little envious when you hear people talking about really terrific things that happen in their lives and to wish the same thing or something similar could happen in your own life. Even when we are truly happy for someone else, it is not unusual to have the fleeting thought “I wish that could happen for me, too.” Envy only becomes a problem if it becomes intense, constant, or takes over your life.
Research suggests that strong feelings of envy can have a negative impact on health and well-being. Envy has been linked to the release of stress hormones, increased blood pressure, and elevated heart rate. Of course, a little bit of jealously can sometimes be motivating and give us that extra needed push to help us achieve our goals.
It is very easy to live by the old adage “the grass is always greener in someone else’s yard.” But, although someone else’s life may appear on the surface to be filled with only good fortune and happiness, NO life is perfect and/or free of problems. Everyone has ups and downs.
If you spend too much time looking at what other people have or accomplish and comparing it to what you do not have or have not accomplished, you are doing yourself more harm than good. Take a step back and refocus. Here are a few suggestions you may find helpful.