“Whoever envies another confesses his superiority”
Envy is deadly, not only does it keep you in bondage, it also leads to resentment and bitterness, it breeds discontent and distress, it makes you see no good in yourself, would push you to do things you wouldn’t do normally and if not checked, can lead into a feeling of failure and depression.
Envy is a weighty load that drags you behind, distracts you and makes you lose focus.
Many are struggling with this emotion drainer and waster.
What do you envy in others, their appearance, relationships, talents, career , material possessions ?
The sad part is that social media has made it worse by providing breeding grounds for envy . Daily, you see people flaunting what they have, you see people living the life you so desperately desire and put it to your face, it doesn’t matter if it is real or not, but each time you see them, a kind of hatred, resentment and bitterness springs up in you towards them.
Sometimes you feel like they don’t even deserve what they have or the life they enjoy, you wish it was you.
You’ve got to understand that envy slowly kills the spirit and soul and if not curtailed on time, it can kill the body.
Here are steps you can take to stop being envious of others.
1. Focus on the blessings in your life.
We begin to envy others when we start taking our own blessings for granted.
The song writer says, count your blessings, name them one by one, it will surprise you what the Lord has done . Look around you, there are numerous things to be grateful for, rather than focus on what others have, focus on the countless reasons to be grateful that you have. Be thoughtful and thankful, when you fix your gaze on the things you have, the miles you’ve covered, you would see that you have a lot to be thankful for. Make gratitude a lifestyle, it will help you see more of the good in your life.
2. Stop comparing your life with others
Comparison is the thief of joy- Theodore Roosevelt.
Comparison is a terrible breeder of envy. Comparing what you have to what others have is a good way to make yourself miserable.
Understand that just as our births are different, so is our journey, path and destination in life. That you started together doesn’t mean you will arrive at the same time. No two persons have the same race, we are unique beings. Don’t think anybody’s life is better than yours, you only see and probably know the good side or the side they want you to know. Beneath the flashy life you see lies a thick cloud of sadness, ailment, debt and other negatives you can think of.
The best way to compare is to compare yourself to yourself.
Evaluate your life five years back and the present, appreciate your achievements.
3. Have a positive mindset.
Sometimes envy comes from a perceived failure in a particular area of your life.
You feel envious because you see someone get a degree you’ve always wanted or because someone got an opportunity that you desire.
You are afraid you might not be able to get it again, focusing on this negative thought of failure and incapability will only increase the negative emotions in you.
The more you see people doing what you wish to do in life, the more the fear of you not being able to do it breeds envy in you.
As long as you are alive, you can always achieve anything, there are still numerous opportunities to grab, new schools to attend, new contracts to bid for, new people to date, new jobs to start, and you can always live your dream life if you don’t give up.
Having a positive mentality and a winning mindset will help you overcome envying those who have what you desire , positive thinking would relieve you of whatever pressure the temporary want has placed on you. It may be hard, but it is possible and achievable. Think positive.
4. Constantly remind yourself that nobody has it all.
In life, there will always be people who appear to have it more than you, but also know that we compare the worst of what we know about ourselves to the best of what we know or assume about others.
Nobody has it all in life. Just as you think some have it more than you, there are some who wish they have what you have or be where you are. Every person you meet in life has something that they are either chasing or that is chasing them, we have our challenges, weaknesses, just like you. As long as we are humans, we can never have it all. A good understanding of this should make us appreciate what we have and be contented.
5. Watch your association
Hanging out with friends who value material possessions, extravagant life, want to always have what is in vogue, runs after the latest fashion, cars or accessories, will naturally push you into the trap of a competitive lifestyle.
Not only would you be trying to spend above your means or go through every means available to get money, you would also be spending your time and energy chasing the wrong things of life -mere shadows. There are far more important things to pursue in life.
Be wise, end relationships or conversations that pressures you to accumulate material possessions always.
6. Stop feeling like a victim and stop seeking validation from the wrong places.
Feeling like you are less privileged in life can make you begin to envy others who you are presuming to be highly privileged. Don’t think low of yourself, stop feeling like a failure, stop thinking life is not fair to you and stop seeking validation from others before you can feel good about yourself . Take responsibility for your life, let go of whatever past or hurt that makes you see life being unfavourable to you, people go through different tough stuff everyday.
You have a failed marriage, don’t sit down blaming your partner and the society while you envy those whose marriages are blossoming, rather ,get up, dust yourself and make things happen for yourself.
When you stop seeing yourself as the victim, it will be easier to change how you act and think about things.
7. Spend time with grateful people
Gratitude is contagious. Find grateful people who are contented and happy with life and spend quality time with them. The more you invest your time with them, the more you’ll be like them.
8. Genuinely celebrate the success of others
Be honestly and truly happy for others, rejoice in the greatness of others. If somebody gets something that you desire, be happy for them, it will come to you too, in your own time. Know this, when you learn to be happy for other people’s joy, you are taking a huge step in overcoming envy and also telling the universe to bring yours to you.
9. Be a giver
It may not be easy, but try to do it, make giving a part of your lifestyle. Give your time, give your talents, your abilities, your resources and skills. The more you extend a hand of generosity to those who don’t have, the more you’ll find fulfillment and meaning to life, the more you will see the blessings in your life and the more you will discover where to truly focus your energy- blessing rather than envying. Those who make others happy have no time being bitter.
10. Get a life, get busy.
If you are always sitting around idly or not having much to do, then it is very easy to get the time to dig into other’s lives.
Get busy, look for something productive to keep you busy. Busy people don’t have time to envy others.
Get a dream and chase after it, limit the time you spend on social media , most of what you see and use as a yardstick to measure your own achievements are fake.
Learn a skill, pursue a career, register for courses, try out new fun activities.
Simply spend less time analyzing life and more time living and exploring it.
11. Honestly tell it to God.
If you have tried all the tips above and you still find yourself in the trap of envy, humbly and genuinely cry out to God.
Open up your weakness to him and don’t be ashamed to ask for help.
It has helped me a lot, that moment where I bare it all to Him and genuinely cry for help.
Sometimes, we don’t wish to envy, we never planned it, but all along, we find it creeping into our hearts and we see ourselves manifesting it, once you get to that stage of realization, cry out to God and ask him to completely remove the spirit of envy from you, spend time in worship and meditate on the goodness of God towards you, remind yourself of His promises and keep your focus on that.
If we humbly ask him for help, he hears and helps us out of our weaknesses.
Other posts you may want to read.
1. Overcoming Chronophobia
2.How to overcome Writer’s block
3. How to avoid heartbreak in a relationship
4.Why Christians can listen to secular musics
5. Never settle with a man who has these habits