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Why Am I Jealous of My Friend’s Success?

Every single person experiences a lot of funny feelings when their best friend shows up with some great news. While you listen to your friend talk joyfully about their latest accomplishment, the first feelings that overwhelm you are pride and happiness. But, it’s no surprise to feel jealousy towards your friend’s success, too.

How awful is that, right? Well, not really. This is an entirely normal reaction that may come from many sources. There are many causes of jealousy, such as low self-esteem, insecurity, co-dependence, being possessive, trust issues, feeling as if you are not good enough, and bringing other past behaviors into your current friendship.

Jealousy does feel negative and horrible since it comes from a pretty dark place. Even though it is not a reason for worry, it needs to be acknowledged for the sake of yourself and your friends as well. The most important thing is that you should never let jealousy get out of hand, to the point where your friend no longer wants to share their good news.

The good news is, some tips can help you reign in your jealousy. But, before we get to that part, it is important to make a distinction between jealousy and envy.

The main difference between jealousy and envy is that jealousy is the emotion related to fear that something you have will be taken away by someone else. However, envy is the emotion of coveting what someone else has.

Now, here are some tips that will help you handle your jealousy, that is envy! Moving forward, we’ll be saying “jealous” instead of the correct term… because Google and SEO. Pfft 🙂

Table of Contents

1. Acknowledge Your Envy

The very moment you feel the green-eyed monster rearing its head, take a moment to acknowledge it. Even though your immediate reaction might be to tamp the emotion down, that rarely works. On the contrary, suppressing your feelings is often ineffective, and it can increase the intensity and frequency of the emotion being suppressed. So, allow yourself to feel your envy and remember that it is entirely normal. But don’t let your emotions get out of hand.

2. Your Friend’s Happiness Doesn’t Hurt You

Even though it may feel that way at first because we live in a competitive world, keep in mind that there isn’t a limited supply of success. When thinking about your friend’s most recent success, always remember that it doesn’t affect your happiness and achievements.

3. Locate The Source of Your Envy

If you’re wondering, “how do I stop feeling envy,” the first thing you need to do is figure out your source of envy. At first, you might think that the person who made you envious is the source. But, if you dig a bit deeper, you may realize that the reason you feel envious has little to do with the person who brought out the feelings. Don’t hold this feeling against yourself, but take a moment to figure it out.

4. Don’t Focus On What You Don’t Have

Maybe you’ve been submitting resumes for months without any success and your friend sent one and immediately landed a job. This can make you feel like your life is luckless and horrible, while everyone else’s is fantastic. But, this is simply not true. Next time you find yourself beating yourself up over what someone else has. Appreciate what you have, and yes, appreciate what you have that someone else doesn’t. Everyone’s life has ups and downs, including the friend you’re envious of.

5. Stress Can Affect Your Emotions

How do you overcome jealousy of others’ success when nothing you try works out in the end?

If it seems that no matter what you do, you can’t handle your jealousy well, stress might be the reason. Being tired, overwhelmed, or stressed out may make it harder to deal with your negative emotions.  

“Jealousy is a stress response, which means if you’re already anxious and overwhelmed, you’re likely to feel it even more intensely … [So] manage anxiety with exercise, good nutrition, meditation or yoga, and plenty of supports,” Craig Malkin, Ph.D., explained for Psychology Today. Whenever you start feeling that your jealousy is getting out of control, remember that a little self-care might be exactly what you need.

6. Think Of Your Friend As An Inspiration

Here is one simple trick that will help you cure your envy. Instead of comparing yourself to your successful friend and feeling negative because of that, try thinking of your friend as an inspiration. If your friend managed to get a job, you can too! Pick his or her brain for tips and tricks, instead of sitting there green with envy.

7. Deal With Your Feelings in a Healthy Way

Jealousy and envy are negative gut feelings that are impossible to eliminate entirely. However, you can nip them in the bud. The most important thing is to realize that emotion is happening. And, once you do, do something that will help you feel better; go for a run, talk about your emotions to someone, or do yoga. Remember, you should never suppress your feelings. Instead, do something that you like, and that can turn negative feelings into positive.

8. Try to Be Compassionate

Jealousy can easily overwhelm you and make you blind to other people’s struggles. For example, you might focus on the fact that your friend got a new job that you forget about their not-so-perfect relationship. This situation is more common than we might think since it is so hard to think about someone’s difficulties when you’re so busy envying their seemingly perfect life. 

9. Team Up With Your Friends

If you’re still wondering how do you overcome jealousy of others success, here is one tip for you – adopt the “we’re-all-in-this-together” mentality.”

Viewing your friends as partners in crime, instead of people to compete against will make everything so much easier. Having successful friends will up your chances of being successful. If you’re supportive of them, they will be supportive of you.

10. Be Grateful for What You Have

Different things happen to people at different stages of life. That is why it is so unreasonable to compare yourself to others. Instead, you should learn to appreciate and be grateful for where you’re at right now. Maybe you’re not as successful as your friend, or you’re not in a relationship, but by working through anything that you perceive as less than ideal, you are achieving something incredible – growth. And growth will make room for the changes you’ve been waiting for.

Now that we covered you and your jealousy, it’s time to think about others. Have you ever wondered, do friends get jealous of your success? Well, the answer to that question is yes, of course, they do!

If you want to find out how do you tell if someone is secretly jealous of you, then keep reading!

Jealousy is a natural and widespread emotion. However, it seems much harder to deal with other people being jealous of you. After all, you can control your feelings but not the feelings of other people.

Recognizing someone else’s jealousy is important because it can be the first step to fixing your relationship. Here are six telltale signs that someone is jealous of you.

1. Giving False Praise

The most obvious sign that someone is jealous of you is false praise. A jealous person will be the first to pay you a compliment that sounds sincere but is actually dripping with passive aggression.

The moment these people leave the room, they will be rolling their eyes. It’s always easier to pretend you’re not jealous than to address the issue. One way to handle such a situation is to give that person a sincere compliment when something good happens to them. Doing this will help that person see that you’re a genuine person and help curb their jealousy.

2. Belittle Your Success

When people are jealous of you, they will try to belittle your success. No matter how hard you worked to achieve something, they will try to make it seem like it was so easy or that there’s no need to work hard to achieve what you did. They may even be quite rude or condescending while doing so.

If this happens, you should never rise to their bait because it will only make them feel as if they’re right. Remember to stay humble but firm. Point out your success, but don’t brag too much because it might make the jealousy even worse.

3. Jealous People Flaunt Their Success

Sometimes, when a person is jealous of you, they will be inclined to flaunt their success more than it’s worth flaunting. They may even try to point out their achievement while you’re celebrating your own. These are the kind of people who get engaged at other people’s weddings.

Why do they do this? Well, because they consider themselves less successful than you are. While this might be frustrating, getting upset is only going to make things worse because it will justify their behavior. Instead, what you should do with these people is praise them. Leading by example is always an excellent way to alter someone’s behavior.

4. They Are Copycats

If someone is jealous of you, they want to be like you so they can outdo you. That is why jealous people might imitate the way you dress or talk. For some reason, this can help them feel better about themselves. 

Don’t let this upset you! The best way to handle a situation like this is to try and encourage the person to go their own way. And, when you notice them doing their own thing, make sure to give them positive feedback. This will show the person that, in order to be great, they don’t have to be you.

5. Jealous People Are Competitive

According to clinical psychologist Melanie Greenberg, jealous people tend to be very competitive because they want to be the one reaping the success. Even though such behavior might tempt you to take them down a peg, you should always refuse to be a part of unhealthy competition.

For example, if a jealous person tries to argue with you about a job promotion, just tell them that it is not a competition. Refusing to play into their game will make them less likely to try and continue to one-up you.

6. They Will Celebrate Your Failure

If someone is jealous of you, then it is quite possible that they will feel good when you make a mistake or get corrected. Even though they may never show this openly, they will be celebrating your failure secretly.

Even though you can never know this and confront them about this, there is one thing you can do – handle your failure with grace! This will remind a jealous person that making mistakes is a part of everyone’s life. If you don’t get upset, they wouldn’t be able to enjoy your failure as much as they thought they would.

Also, don’t be surprised if you catch someone you suspect is jealous of you talking behind your back. It’s not fun hearing someone say malicious things about you, and the best way to handle this is to confront the person directly. Don’t be afraid that you’ll get into a steamy argument because jealous people don’t tend to be outwardly confrontational. Just pointing their behavior out might be enough to get them to stop it.

Final Thoughts

Did you, by any chance, recognize yourself while reading these signs? Well, we sincerely hope you didn’t! But, even if you did please do remember that it is perfectly normal to feel jealous. But, keep in mind that if you leave your or someone else’s jealousy uncontrolled, it can easily turn into hatred. So, do yourself and your friend/acquaintance a favor and try to sort your feelings out with the help of our tips!

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Tommy P.
Tommy P.

My very first thought when I became aware of my very own consciousness in this earthly world was... "whoa... why are we here? what's the meaning or purpose to life?" I was never able to shake these questions... So come join me on my podcast of rants on many different topics that will assist you in seeing things through a rose-colored lens and on living a life of well-being.

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