Flipping Jealousy to Inspiration

Listen...I'm human and occasionally get jealous. Jealousy is a natural emotion, though in my opinion not a particularly productive one. For me, I've noticed it surfaces when I feel as if I'm not doing enough or living up to my full potential. It can be triggered by seeing what other artists are doing on social media, reading an article of featured makers, or attending an event I may have not gotten accepted into myself.
Seeing the successes of others can somehow get flipped to feeling inadequate. No matter how much you tell yourself the feelings are ridiculous, they are there, even if only for a blip. That's why I think if pangs of jealousy surface, it's important to not get too attached the negative aspect, but to look at why it has surfaced. When I think about what triggers the emotion, it starts to reveal what I want for myself and the direction I want to move in. Jealously can motivate and inspire you to go after what you really want in life.
There are several things I try to do to overcome what is often called "growth envy."
First, I stop comparing myself to others. We are all have our own interests, values, styles, and paths we are on. When I get jealous, I'm looking at one minute aspect of another's life/career. I don't know anything about them or how they got there, so it's pointless to compare myself. I don't know who said it but "Never compare your beginning to someone else's middle."
I sincerely congratulate others on their success either in person or in my head. If I know the person and am physically in front of them, a compliment will always be welcomed and deserved. If the success is in the form of something I'm reading or see online, a mental "congratulations" helps to acknowledge the other's success. As they say, there is enough love and success to go around, so why not appreciate how well others are doing.
And finally, I admit and talk about the jealousy. I am aware when it surfaces, it does me absolutely no good, so why deny it. When I first became aware of my reaction, it was shameful and embarrassing. But I'm human...and if I stop trying to repress when I feel jealous and envious, it gets a bit easier to give the emotion the boot so I can better appreciate other's successes and be inspired because if they can do it, so can I....and if I can do it, so can you.

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