Emotions: Harnessing the Destructive Power of Envy & Jealousy
I remember when I was thirteen years old; it was my first father’s day after my father past away. It was a hard time and still is. I remember looking on old social media accounts like, Nexopia, and seeing others with their fathers, photos popping up, or even the next Monday in class, class mates telling each other their class mates what they did for fathers day as I sat there in envy.
This isn’t the only time I had envy in life but it played a pretty big role in what went on in my life still to this day over a decade later. Little did I know that such a shitty feeling could also be harness for amazing power. This is how I slowly began to change my life, learning who I am, and what I am. This gave me the strength to carry on.
Aside from my father passing away I was a downhill mountain bike racer, you know those crazy people who pedal a bike down a mountain as fast as they could to beat other racers times. Yeah! - One of those crazy people. I always looked up to those better then me and it began to make me work harder for what I wanted. The Envy I had towards others ignited my ambition to overcome a sense of inferiority and achieve future success.
In relationships we may be envious of someone else’s partner and begin got make one of the partners in the relationship feel envious. Well… I wish she did that for me or visa versa. This is all negative; in this situation we need to realize why one is doing the things they do, talk and communicate. Else wise envy will be extremely destructive to you and your partner. I stress the extremely. We must use the benefits of this emotion.
Envy helps us increase our social standings to work towards the goals of what we want. If you want to be successful chances are envy is staring you right in the face. A psychologist from the Tilburg University found that when they induce envy in people it increases ones persistence and performance to help them get what they really want. As you increase persistence you work harder and become more admirable to others. This has other benefits.
As you get better at what ever it is you wish to get better you can help others, which… is an amazing feeling. On top of that you become more admirable. You can only do this, however when you are mindful and recognize that others may be legitimately better then you. It’s okay not everyone is the best at everything and sometimes we just need to take that time we need to focus on what it is that put us in that situation so we can get better. I’ll be teaching strategies to get better in later articles. If you sense injustice you will want to take your rival down. This is not healthy and may lead to an even stronger form of envy, jealousy.
There is one main distinction between envy and jealousy. Envy is longing for what another person has. Jealousy is when a third party threatens your valued relationships with another. Like jealousy envy can be extremely destructive. In reality jealous promotes survival and we do need relationships to survive as a race.
These two emotions must, be used to help couples repair their relationships and examine what’s really going on. This is one of our most protective and powerful emotions. Be mindful and control these emotions wisely. I know they have been quite destructive for me until I realized how to use them to their true potential.