We know that it’s not good to envy each of us since childhood, but many people, even in adulthood, can not completely overcome the habit of becoming angry and gritting their teeth with envy upon hearing about someone’s success. And if most of our fellow citizens are still quite calm about all the new reports about the achievements and acquisitions of well-known politicians and show business stars, then the success of familiar people in many causes a storm of negative emotions, whose name is envy.
According to the dictionaries, envy is a feeling of anger and vexation in relation to someone who owns certain goods. Psychologists working with hundreds of clients and exploring many complexes and problems know that anything can become envy, and although most people tend to be jealous of material well-being, there are those who experience this feeling in relation to someone else’s appearance, talents, personal life and even habits. However, regardless of what is the object of envy, the habit of envying doesn’t bring any benefit, no moral satisfaction, no happiness. Let’s consider in more detail why envy is bad, and how to get rid of envy.
Myths and truth about envy
And psychologists, religious figures, and ordinary people agree that envy is a destructive phenomenon that must be excluded from their social and emotional life. But, popular myths about envy and struggle with it appear in popular mass media, and in interviews with famous people with an enviable constancy. For sure, each of us at least once heard these myths, and many even tried to be guided by them in the fight against vice, but they could not get rid of the habit of envy. Let us examine these myths in more detail, as well as their refutation.
Myth number 1: There is a bad “black” and harmless “white” envy.
Truth: there is no harmless envy, since this phenomenon in all its manifestations is destructive and harmful. People who say that they envy “white” envy, just try to calm their conscience and get rid of feelings of guilt. Justifying themselves, they convince themselves that envying, don’t want others to evil, so their vice is harmless. However, it should be understood that in itself a feeling of vexation because of the success of another man is detrimental to the emotional well-being and psyche of an envious person, and it doesn’t matter that envying, he doesn’t want another evil.
Myth number 2: Envy pushes for self-development and success.
Truth: to the self-development of man, as if trivially it didn’t sound, pushes the desire to develop and grow as a person, and the correct motivation helps to realize this desire. Depend on the same — completely destructive phenomenon, so the envious man can hours and days away mentally and aloud resent someone else’s success, but will not take any real measures to achieve anything himself. And the reason for this is simple — to become successful, a person needs to direct all his resources (including intellectual and emotional ones) into a constructive channel, and the envious person is not up to it, because he is full of anger and a sense of vexation, and the brain is busy criticizing the man who has achieved success and reflections on the injustice of life.
Myth number 4: Think about your advantages and determine what the envious is better than who he envies — the best way to defeat this vice.
True: the habit of comparing oneself with other people, in fact, is not much better than envy, and even more — it’s from it that the roots of this vice grow. Comparing himself with another person and trying to determine his advantages over him, the envious person only “feeds” envy, because instead of getting rid of it, he consoles himself with the help of his own superiority. As a result, instead of getting rid of envy, a person will always reassure himself that in fact he is more beautiful / smarter / kinder than the one to whom he envies.
Myth number 5. To depreciate the object of your envy is a simple and effective method to get rid of the feeling of vexation caused by other people’s successes.
The depreciation of the object of envy is a bad way to deal with vice.
True: many psychologists advise envious people to think that what they envy is really only a “facade”, “external manifestations of success” for which a person who has them has sacrificed something significant. It is with this belief that the roots of the opinion take on the likeness of “a woman with a good, highly paid job is unhappy in her personal life,” “beautiful people do not have high intelligence,” “all the rich are stale and unscrupulous people,” etc. But this way of fighting envy is not only useless, but also harmful, because through it a man programs himself to negative thinking. Depreciating everything that causes envy, a person at a subconscious level inspires himself that material prosperity / beauty / successful career is bad and unnecessary. In the future, it will be very difficult for an envious man to achieve success, since his subconscious will resist all positive undertakings because of earlier suggestions.
How to get rid of envy?
The roots of envy lie in the appraisal and hierarchical system, which to some extent enjoys every person. In the case when a person, comparing himself with other people, evaluates himself “below” them, he begins to feel annoyed and jealous, as he subconsciously (or consciously) wants to be “higher” from the point of view of his own hierarchical system. Getting rid of envy is completely possible, but for this, a person needs to completely change his outlook and attitude to social roles and social hierarchy.
The only way to get rid of envy is to restore adequate self-esteem and completely abandon the habit of comparing yourself with other people. And this can be achieved with the help of the following recommendations:
1. Restore low self-esteem. A person who has a low self-esteem puts himself “below” most of those around him in his own appraisal hierarchy, so he can feel jealous of almost every person, even in cases where there are no objective reasons for this pernicious feeling.
2. Limit communication with people who tend to criticize and impose feelings of guilt. Each person will have at least one friend, who loves everyone to teach and tell others why they live wrong. Communication with such people can lead to low self-esteem, a sense of guilt over others for their “wrong” way of life, and as a result — envy of more “right” people. There are a lot of ways to get rid of the feeling of guilt yourself, so each person can quickly eliminate the consequences of communicating with manipulators and critics and restore the psyche.
3. Get rid of the belief in a “just peace”. All worshipers of faith in the “just world” inherent in the conviction that all good people must be rewarded by higher forces, and punished by bad ones. And of course, they consider “good” themselves, and bad ones — those who have inaccessible to them. In fact, we can not say that the world is completely unfair, but there is no division into “good and bad” in it, as there is no reward for “good”. Therefore, one must get rid of the belief in “higher justice” as soon as possible in order to stop waiting for gifts from the sky, and take your life into your own hands.
4. Always wish people good and rejoice in the successes of others. Hearing about the success of another person, you need to try to put yourself in his place, to imagine his joy and to feel his positive emotions. This simple exercise will help not only to overcome envy, but also to become a less selfish person, as it promotes the development of empathy and empathy. And of course, it should be remembered that “like attracts like that,” therefore, to the benevolent person, the surrounding people will treat the same way, but the envious man finds it difficult to expect a good attitude from others.
5. Determine your true goals and desires. “Everyone has their own happiness,” said the wise people of old times, and modern psychologists quite agree with them. In fact, most of us do not need a prestigious brand car, a figure like the famous top model or a scientific degree, and it’s the awareness of what constitutes “personal happiness” that will help to stop envious people who have achieved success in this or that sphere. Therefore, the best way to permanently get rid of the habit of comparing yourself with others and envying more successful people be to understand what exactly brings pleasure and what kind of business you want to do.
6. To take for granted the fact that every man has his own way of life, and success and failure are consequences of his own choice along the way. There are no two identical fates, because each of us makes one or another choice every day, which in the future will bring certain fruits. Someone decides to devote himself to the family, someone pays most of his life to work, someone risks and starts new projects, and someone prefers a quiet life and stable work … Everything that is in a person’s life is a consequence of his decisions and his actions, and therefore, envy is meaningless, because no benefits fall on people from the sky. Therefore, instead of envying a more successful acquaintance, it is better to think about what choice you need to make to achieve happiness yourself.
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