Friday, February 15, 2013


Like many other traits we have, it is hypothesized that envy is probably an adaptive evolutionary trait! 

The belief is that at a time when resources were scarce it helped keep our species competitive.

This theory goes on to explain that our discomfort with acknowledging envy also fits because of the ‘one down’ position that envy seems to imply.

An opportunity to experiment with some fun ideas...

Struggling with envy?  Here’s a sure fire way to diminish the discomfort:

1)      Cop to it!  (Yeah I know - dating myself again, but some expressions say it all…)

Acknowledging our emotions is always a first step in getting control over their impact on our lives.

2)      Give yourself a “So What!  After all, face it, if it’s in our DNA…

So you envy that guy’s millions – if you really think about it, you don’t want to be him, you just want his money!

3)      As always, remind yourself of who you are and what you do have. 

       It’s okay to envy someone else’s stuff but never to diminish yourself!

Two last thoughts about envy:
 Envy is comparing someone’s else’s outside to your insides.

And a story of the Plotkin Diamond:
Two ladies are sitting next to each other at some ritzy event.   
Lady 1 admires Lady 2’s gigantic diamond ring.

“It’s gorgeous,” she says enviously.

“Yes,” agrees Lady 2.  “It’s called the Plotkin Diamond.  But it comes with a curse.”

“Oh,” says Lady 1.  “What’s the curse?”

“Plotkin” sighs Lady 2, looking down the table at her husband.

What do ya say?  Have any good envy stories to share?

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  1. I wouldn't say that I necessarily suffer from envy, but I have begun to, in the last 3 or 4 years, replay in my head that "life isn't fair". Is that Envy's cousin, maybe?

    I find that number three APP above works for me. Life may not be fair, but there's nothing I can do about I luck. But I can be well prepared, work hard, keep a positive attitude, and take care of and try to respect myself regardless.

    There's an old saying in baseball: How does a batter get into a slump? The way it happens is this: a good batter (one the gets a hit about about 30% of the time) will experience some bad luck, and maybe go for a handful of games only getting a hit 20% of the time. But he allows this bad luck frustrate and distract him from the good and common sense things he used to do that made him a good hitter in the first place! Now, with both bad luck AND bad habits going against him, he's really in trouble!

    I guess I'm trying to convince myself to stay focused on the smart, positive habits that I know in my head and heart will help me, and not get so wound up about what I can't control.

  2. Hey JT I love your comments! They always add another dimention to what Carol is writing. Hang in there!

  3. I like thinking of envy as an evolutionary trait, that takes away any bad feelings about it. And kind of allows me to laugh any time I go there. Nice.

  4. This is an interesting topic, and I think it runs very deep into the economic landscape the human race.

    One note first: cop is actually used on some of the fashion forums I visit to refer to buying new clothes.

    Anyway, about envy, I like your approach of "flipping" it and thinking more about developing yourself rather than comparing what you've got to others. That way it sort of fits a more general rule in my mind: always be aggressive! (Note: I'm not actually an aggressive person by nature, but that's why I always have to remind myself.) In other words, the best defense is a good offense. It's easier to get somewhere by making progress for yourself than by worrying about what others are doing.