Daily Reminders: Envy–The other green-eyed monster
Everyone knows that feeling–wanting those things or characteristics another person has. When it comes to my anxiety–it's usually others' characteristics I admire most. I compare myself to others all the time–why do I have this anxiety disorder that I have to manage everyday while others seem to breeze through life faith-filled and content? No rushing thoughts, no minutes and hours filled with "what if" questions. Though Facebook can be a great way to keep in touch with others–I also feel a rush of envy when I look at other women who are successful at their job, who run marathons and post happy family pictures, and write wonderful life affirming statuses. I am also envious of newscasters. How do they give the news on t.v. without their necks and face turning blotchy, their voice shaking, and sweat rolling down their forehead? I can't even imagine what that would be like. Any talking I've ever had to do in front of others immediately has my heart beating hard, my face and neck red and visible sweating. When I was in my sister's wedding I had to get a special deodorant to keep me from sweating–and it still didn't work very well. When I was a teenager I went to the mall with my friends and we talked to any boys–I I would have to blow dry my armpits under the hairdryers afterwards because my anxiety would take over. I could produce some serious sweat rings.
But today if I start to feel envy I will remember what my therapist and I have talked about in regards to envy:
1) You never know what is going on in others' lives. Everybody has their own problems and nobody's life is perfect.
2) Never compare yourself to others–it is a complete waste of time. Unless every human is born with the same brains, looks, upbringing, and are basically identical then how can you compare yourself to others? There is a lot to be said for the phrase "Be the best that you can be." If you can achieve that–then you have accomplished so much.
3) Don't try to suppress envy, but instead use at as a motivator rather than something that feeds an inferiority complex. Use it to focus on your own skills and how you can strengthen who you are. Use it to fufill your own dreams.
Any other thoughts on envy?