No matter how you try to rise above it, the little green monster of envy peeks his head out of everyone's baggage closet now and again. There's nothing wrong with feeling a little envious when a friend gets the type of relationship you've been lusting after, or the promotion you've been killing yourself for. But there's a difference between a little bit of healthy, natural jealousy, and full fledged, irrational, crippling insecure envy, which, uh, a lot of people struggle with.
The first thing you should know is that jealousy is that it's just another word for a lack of self-esteem. It isn't saying "I wish I had that," it's saying, "I wish I were worthy of that." The problem isn't that you don't have it... it's that you don't think you're good enough for it. Jealousy really isn't an indication that you're failing, or that you're unloved, or that you should push even harder for the cool things your friends seem to have. All it means is that you need to reevaluate not only how you think of yourself, but what you do to love yourself.
Loving yourself, after all, includes pushing yourself in the direction of your best life. Not toward the things the people you envy have, but toward the things you want. That's another thing about jealousy: it usually only crops up when we know, at some fundamental level, we're not doing as well as we could be. Not that we're not good enough. Not that it's unfair. But simply that we could be trying harder, and should be. So here are a few things to do when you feel jealous (or generally down on yourself).
Ask yourself: is this thing I'm mad I don't have something I actually want? Does somebody else having something good mean that I don't have anything positive in my own life?
Ask Yourself Where You Aren't Showing Up Fully To Your Life
You can almost always take jealousy as a signal that you aren't living up to the potential you already know you have. So ask yourself how you could start doing that, or where you're lacking in the first place. It will solve a whole lot more than you think it will.
Nothing nips mild feelings of wanting someone else to fail like expressing support or love for them regardless. When you're most resistant to feeling happy for someone, that's when you really have to plow through and feel it. It's not only fair to you — it's being nice to others, too.
Remember That You Aren't Only As Good As You Are Better Than Someone Else
In the words of Mean Girls, "Calling someone else stupid doesn't make you smart." In this case, though: thinking someone else is successful doesn't make you a failure. Seeing that someone else is beautiful doesn't make you unattractive. Things can exist separately than in your comparative little world. Let them. You'll be a lot better off for it.
Images: The CW; Giphy (3)