Jealousy and Envy: A Closer Look at Two Similar Emotions
Jealousy and envy are emotions that are often used interchangeably but are two distinct feelings. They both arise from situations where we feel we’re lacking something that others have, leading to negative emotions that can bring us down. However, it is important to note that jealousy is usually a destructive emotion, while envy can have a more positive spin. In this article, we will explore the subtle differences between jealousy and envy and how the latter can be used to our advantage.
The Subtle Difference Between Jealousy and Envy
Jealousy is the feeling we get when we believe someone is trying to take something we hold dear from us, whether it’s an object, a loved one, or something else. It is a natural emotion that can help us safeguard our relationships and possessions, but too much can lead to possessiveness, passive aggression, and other negative behaviors. On the other hand, envy is the feeling we get when we want something someone else has. This could be a talent, a success, or a possession. Unlike jealousy, envy doesn’t necessarily involve the fear of losing something. Instead, it often stems from a feeling of inferiority or unfairness.
How The ‘Flaw’ of Envy Can Be a Good Thing
While envy is often seen as a negative emotion, it can also be used to our advantage. When we feel envious of someone’s success or belongings, it can give us an indication of what we want in our own lives. Our envy can be a sign of where we want to go, what we want to achieve or who we want to become. Therefore, instead of seeing envy as a harmful emotion, we can use it as a motivator to push us to reach our goals. Moreover, acknowledging our envy can help us re-focus our energy and instead of looking outwardly to others, we can look inwardly and figure out what we need to do to get where we want to go.
How To Use Envy To Your Advantage
When we are feeling envious, it is essential to take a moment to reflect on why we’re feeling this way. Is there something we are chasing but haven’t achieved yet? Have we been setting unreasonable standards for ourselves, or are we comparing ourselves to others in an unfair way? Taking some time to understand our feelings of envy can be a powerful tool for motivating ourselves to make positive changes in our lives. Here are some questions we can ask ourselves when we feel envious:
– What can I learn from this person’s success?
– What’s been stopping me from thinking bigger in my life, and how can I overcome these barriers?
– Have I set the right standards for my success, and have I appreciated what I’ve already achieved?
– How can I recognize other people’s successes positively and use them to motivate myself?
Jealousy and envy can both be negative emotions, but they also have their place in our emotional lives. While jealousy is often seen as a harmful emotion, envy can be a potent motivator for positive change. By understanding and acknowledging our feelings of envy and discovering the root of our emotions, we can use envy as an opportunity for growth and change in our lives.