Thursday, October 10, 2013

Jealousy vs. Envy

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We've all been guilty of falling victim to the green eyed monster.

I've definitely had moments in my past where I've been jealous of someone else. Where I wanted what someone else had, and I didn't want them to have it because I didn't have it.

But at some point I realized how selfish that was. Just because I didn't have it, I shouldn't want to deprive that person of it. Who was I to dictate what someone else should or shouldn't have in their life? And what did their life have anything to do with mine? If they didn't have something, it didn't somehow enrich mine any more or less.

Now, that doesn't mean there aren't moments where I'm not ENVIOUS of someone else, their situation, or what they have. See, the difference with envy is that you can want something, wish you had it, but you don't wish it against someone else.

Am I envious that some of my friends are already married? Sure!
Does that mean that I wish them unhappiness? Absolutely not. That would be totally selfish of me.

Am I envious that some of my friends have kids, and are in that different stage of life already? Yeah, sometimes. (And then there are the times that I'm not at all haha).
Does that mean that I wish they didn't have their kids? No way!

I think as I've grown up, I've realized that the world doesn't revolve around me (most days anyway :), and whether someone has something or doesn't have something, it doesn't really have any bearing on my life. Unless I let it have an impact or effect.

Comparing my life to someone else's was always harmful. Those people hadn't been through the things that I had, and I hadn't been through what they'd been through. So how could I compare? And who's to say because someone had something I THOUGHT that I wanted, that it was what I NEEDED? Especially at the time that I wanted it? Because looking back now, it was never what I needed at that point.

I've also realized that being around people who think that way is toxic. You can't share happy things with them, because they can never be truly happy for you. And, if you can't share something happy or exciting about your life with a friend, what kind of a friend are they really? I recently was able to put a friendship completely in my past, and not dwell on it any longer (which I had been off and on since our friendship ended, and slightly more recently since planning the wedding and doing all of the things I thought she'd be involved in), because I realized that that person is not capable of being truly happy for anyone who has anything that she does not have. I don't need someone like that in my life. If a friend of mine shares something with me that they're excited about, I'm happy for them and I can (and want to) share in their excitement. I don't say "yay" and then secretly wish they didn't have it, or complain about how it's not "fair" behind their back. That word 'fair'...there's a good saying in our school that I love: 
"Fair doesn't always mean EQUAL." 
And why is it not 'fair' that someone has found happiness and you haven't yet? What does their life have to do with yours? Have they made the same decisions that you have? Have they put up with the same things that you have? If the answer to that is "no" (and it's likely to be), then how is it not "fair"? That doesn't make sense.
  What I recently got hit hard with, in this situation and dealing with the other dramas lately, is that I don't need jealousy in my life. Envy has its own issues--I try and keep myself in check there, too. But, jealousy (and the people who carry the jealousy bug) can get the heck out of here, thank you very much.

Sorry for the more serious post. I just wanted to brain dump a little bit. Back to normal happy-go-lucky posts tomorrow :)

8 comments:

  1. I'm so proud of you! Toxic and jealous friends are not worth your time. GOOD JOB!

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  2. Oh my gosh, I have been thinking some of these same things lately!!! I totally agree - we all have certain things that make us envious. And that's normal. But to wish others unhappiness/be unable to have happiness for others? That's where it becomes a true problem!!! Unfortunately, I feel like there are a lot of people out there who are unable to be happy for others. It's sad:( I'm just glad to know that there are sweet people like you out there that ARE able to share in others' happiness!!!:) I like that you were real today, Jenn and shared what's on your heart:)

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  3. I agree completely, what a great post! :)

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  4. girl, I love the truth and are authenticity behind your words in this post. being jealous is so easy. so easy! thank goodness for the grace and mercy of Jesus to forgive us and set us back on track. thanks for sharing your heart. adored every word!!

    xx
    Elise
    www.cheersyall-thehoustons.blogspot.com

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  5. agree completely. it's good to share, don't be sorry!

    We are all guilty of jealousy, and I find myself having that same problem!
    xxoo

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  6. where is this coming from? i'm an extremely jealous person cuz my life sucks a lot of the time. lol. i'm trying to remember the counting "other people's blessings' whenever i feel that jealously monster bubble up inside me i tell myself that and remind myself to count my own blessings.

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  7. I think we have all fallen victim to things like this! I'm glad you got if off your chest, and I'm sure you helped a few others in sharing.

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