Ok, so do you ever hear good news that happened for someone else and instead of thinking:
‘That’s so AWESOME for them’ think, ‘Geez I wish that would happen for me’.
Do you know what that is? It’s the Envy Monster rearing its ugly, nasty, dreadful, terrible head…
Why, oh why do we do that!?!
We want, want, want.
We might not be lying on the floor and kicking our feet like a little kid anymore, but inside that’s exactly what we are doing.
- We want to have the body like so and so.
- We want a house decorated like that one.
- We want a larger house like theirs.
- We want kids that behave like those.
- So-and-so’s family goes here, or does that.
- We want a pay raise (stay-at-home-mom’s want someone to say they like how their socks were folded or something – any recognition would do).
- We want to be married if we aren’t. Or if only our spouse would be like so-and-so if we are married.
We want , want, want – see what I mean.
The bar rises higher.
Nothing is ever enough.
Regrettably, it’s natural, it just comes with being human; however, it can and should be overcome.
Why is envy a bad thing anyway? Because it isformed from destructive emotions such as resentment and inadequacy. Nothing is ever gained from envy; however, a great deal can be lost.
It set’s us up for failure on numerous levels.
Let’s list a few:
- Our family or loved ones can never, ever compete with ‘so-and-so’, which means they know from the start they have failed. Why should they try? They may exert all their time trying to make you happy and gain your admiration, but it’s only shallow affection on those terms. Generally, they will not even try because there is no chance to come in as a placed winner. In the family, envy can divide and even break family relations to the point of not being able to be together as grown adults. This is tragic for all involved.
- When we constantly want newer and better, we are never satisfied. Consequently the demands we put on our-self and others is unobtainable = persistent unhappiness.
- If we complain and focus on our body not being perfect, what society deems attractive, or what we envision, how can our children ever see themselves as beautiful! Their role model has missed the boat completely, is unhappy and setting the example of a life time of misery.
- To get ahead of others in the workplace, or in society, we insult and are rude, which actually makes others dislike us.
- Envy clouds your thinking because you start to see only the negative, pessimistic, fearful side of life. The joy is gone and no room for love. It will almost always affect your health too with anxiety, depression and other issues.
- Your sweetheart can only take so much of a jealous honey. Trust is a prime foundation that a relationship is based on and if one person is envious, of everything and everyone, it will eventually be a deal breaker. A control nut is not a beneficial and contributing partner, but a weight to carry.
- When acting jealous or envious it can lead to criminal and illegal acts. That is NO way to live.
The ultimate tragedy stemming from envy is the effect it has on our relationship with God.
I believe one of the greatest sins we can commit by commission (on purpose) and omission (accidentally/oversight) is ingratitude.
Gratitude is the antithesis to envy.
- What we have, we consider enough, so we are satisfied and pleasant to be around.
- It is a remarkable change that happens to us when we desire to be sincerely grateful. Our countenance changes. We look better, different and nicer to be with.
- Family and friends want to talk to us because they know they will be appreciated for even a small good or improvement.
- Our home will be a wonderful place to be because of the feeling there.
- Our marriage, our family life, our circle of friends will feel of our affection and sincere concern for their behalf and communication will open and receptive as never before.
- When we are grateful, we look at the things and blessing we HAVE, not at what we do not have. Then our view, our world – our heart begins to change for the better.
- We will be grateful for small miracles and blessings to recognizing the angels in our life.
- The love in our heart will overflow with peace and joy that we may not have ever felt before.
The greatest blessing from battling the ENVY MONSTER, and WINNING, is that we have room in our life for God to work His marvelous plan.
His design, which is far more than we can ever do on our own, is filled with satisfaction, contentment, helping others along the way and pure joy.
I believe this is the goal most all of us have, you and me.
To LEARN this principle, to PRACTICE it consciously, and to BECOME a much better person.
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015, 2020