The other day, as I was chugging up an imaginary hill on my treadmill watching TV, I saw an eleven year old boy interviewed on the Today Show. Meredith was totally charmed by this little wise guy who wrote a book called How To Talk To Girls when he was nine! Now eleven, his first book was so successful he wrote two more books, How To Talk To Dads and (wait for it) How To Talk To Moms!
I was outraged, green with envy and the object of my hate was eleven years old! Now that's pathetic. I asked myself, “If you could, would you swap your life for
his?” No, of course not. I’m perfectly happy where I am. Then what was this nasty emotion trying to tell me? That I wanted to write a book? Then stop dithering around and do it!
Okay. That's it. Jealousy gone. And only because I realized that as much as I love my life there was still something I needed to do to feel I was living life to its fullest: Write a book.
That and fit into a size six.
No one but I can take responsibility for my life. Whether a book happens or not is my choice. My jealousy had nothing to do with the precocious kid and everything to do with doing my best (number 8 of Therese Borchard's, 8 Ways To Overcome Jealousy And Envy.)
So here's a positive side of jealousy: It can be a great motivator! A positive force for change. As long as we focus on our own inner voice, on ourselves, and not on the object of our jealousy we have a shot at finding out what's missing in our lives and go after it.
Photo courtesy of Arealfake via Flickr