- Here’s an excerpt from the Oola Guys:
Challenge 13: Trade Jealousy for Inspiration
Have you ever become overly consumed with someone else’s life? Maybe you’re checking their Facebook page every day. Maybe you’re constantly comparing their relationship to yours. Maybe you wish you thought up their business idea so you could be crushing it.
Today’s #OolaYLChallenge is to identify everything that person has that you want. Whether it includes traits or things, put it all on there. Now, cross off his or her name and above it write, “What is possible.”
Let the things other people have inspire you instead of making you feel jealous or envious. You are worthy and have the talents and abilities to get what you want out of life.
First, a quick note on the difference between envy and jealousy. Jealousy is wanting what someone else has (even when we can’t possibly know all the behind the scenes circumstances). But envy is something altogether uglier. You know you suffer from envy when you not only want what others have, but you also want to make sure they don’t have it. Yuck, right? It doesn’t feel good to even consider the possibility that we harbor those kinds of feelings.
But y’all. Ugly truth bomb 💥! I’m guilty of this. Not so much because I don’t want them to have it but because rather than looking for all the work they are doing behind the scenes or for ways to get after it myself….I am guilty of thinking how karma will catch up to them, characterizing their good fortune as luck instead of the payoff for hard work or perhaps worse…justifying why I don’t have it or am not worthy of it. 😱💔
Over the last year a few things have been revealed to me (or I finally faced the truth):
- Social Media does not equal reality or at least it doesn’t tell the whole story.
- Some of these folks have been willing to make a lot of sacrifices that I haven’t…of time, sleep, finances, other interests, etc.
- Until I am willing to assess myself honestly and put in the work required….I’m not going to make forward progress.
- I can blame circumstances and contrast myself with others (capabilities, network, opportunities) but the reality is….I have no one to blame but myself if I’m not successful. Ouch!
This year I taught an elective at the Command and General Staff College on Resilience (I know, I know….those who can’t….teach, right?). One of the TED Talks I used also happened to be the guest speaker at YL’s Convention this year. Shawn Achor is the author of “The Happiness Advantage” which proposes two big things I highlighted in my classes (and which I think are particularly relevant for me):
- Positive people have an advantage in life, in that they are grateful, more resilient and more likely to appreciate the present moment.
- Success must be defined and not in terms of “when I….I will be happy” because that, my friends, is a moving target that we will never achieve.#grassaintalwaysgreener #carefulwhatyouwishfor
So, I’m really concentrating on enjoying my journey, letting go of the past and trying not to sacrifice the present for the future. And, I’m trying to remember that the picture on social media only tells half the story because we all have pain, sorrow, jealousy and fear that we don’t display for others; my worth and value aren’t determined by what I don’t have but rather…what I do…and the effort I put forth in pursuing my dreams. And, finally, anything is possible with Faith, elbow grease and some positive energy.
OH! But the biggest lesson the last few years has taught me (and what I’m gonna post on my mirror, my phone and any other surface where I need it): This life may be lived on my terms but not on my time. It’s His time and I’ve only ever been disappointed by unanswered prayers when I lacked the faith to believe He had something better planned for me ❤️