On Jealousy

It is such an unflattering thing to admit about myself, but sometimes I really struggle with jealousy.

I can be jealous of people who have more money than me, of people whose blogs are more popular/get more comments, of people who are more attractive/better dressed/more generally pulled together, and of people who seem to be more in shape and more athletic than I am.

I try to remind myself that A) I don’t know all the work that went into that person having the thing that I want and that B) there isn’t a finite amount of talent or fitness or whatever in the world. Someone else having something doesn’t mean that I’ll never get that thing.

Sometimes, though, sometimes. I’ll pick up a book, start to read it and discover it is not that well written and I’ll have this moment of searing jealousy. How come this shit got published and I don’t have a book published (helpful hint, self, maybe I need to actually write a book first)?

Sometimes I’ll see a very fit woman and will feel totally discouraged that I don’t look like her, even though honesty compels me to admit that it is because I’ve been damned lazy the last 10 years or so.

I need to work on having jealousy be something that motivates me to more aggressively pursue the things I want instead of letting it make me feel defeated.

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5 thoughts on “On Jealousy

  1. Mr. Monkey says:

    First, that photo cracks me up because it blows my mind that Sophia Loren (the dark-haired woman to all you youngesters) would be jealous of anyone. She was in her day considered by many among the most beautiful women in the world. Also, I try to remind myself that even successful but crappy book I come across required lots of time and effort to get published. By extension, I try to tell myself, imagine what *I* could do if I exerted myself that much. That is, in my jealousy I try to find some reason for admiration instead, even if it’s just of someone’s perserverance. Of course, often this doesn’t work and I still feel jealous of more successful people.

  2. Gretchen says:

    If you want to take a really zen/yoga point of view, you are exactly where you are supposed to be at this point in time and forces are working within you to …. I don’t know, lost my train of thought. It’s noisy here.

    And I was going to write a slightly less charitable point of view, but it just sounded too mean-spirited so just go with that first one, the zen thing.

  3. Domesticated Gal says:

    Every Tuesday, I arrive at storytime SOOO proud that we are a) on time, b) bathed, c) awake…to find the other mom’s are not only d) all of the above, but have also managed to put on makeup, do their hair, and possibly even eat breakfast.

    And I’m not sure which I’m more jealous of…the fact that their hair doesn’t look like they dragged it into a pony at the last stoplight, or that their stomachs aren’t growling.

    This is why my husband is not allowed at storytime.

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