Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Green with Envy

Judgmental thoughts plague everyone from time to time, but I’ve always wondered why people feel the need to say them out loud.  Why do you care enough about someone else to judge them over something harmless?  If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all, right?

When you really think about the goal behind sharing a negative comment, it boils down envy.  Envy is a cheap, surface level emotion, so let’s boil it down even more.  Underneath all that judgement and jealousy lies something much more interesting: fear.

Jealousy comes from a scarcity mindset – fear that there won’t be enough of something for everyone.  If someone has something you want, you feel envious.  So you judge, and you pass that judgement out loud for all to hear.  Maybe if you can convince everyone else that that person doesn’t deserve it, you can have it all for yourself.  It’s a lousy and primitive way to behave, but it’s unfortunately natural.

Thankfully, we don’t live in a world of constant shortage anymore.  There is enough of most things to go around: love, success, happiness.  Peeing in someone else’s yard won’t make yours greener.  If we watered each other’s yards, we’d all have beautiful grass.

Each time you feel the need to judge this week, compliment that person instead.