Our primitive nature, what I have identified as our automatic brain (AB), causes us to have habits. And habits become our automatic, default, go to response to situations.After all, if we were to design our own security system, wouldn’t we want it to be very sensitive, automatic, and predictable? Habits make us feel safe.
Well, reliability is great in a home or office security system, but an automatic and predictable response in the human brain can be harmful as are many of our habits.One habit most of us have is the jealousy (and envy) habit. The jealously/envy habit is like any other response that originates from the AB. It ultimately wears down your body with the constant electrochemical impulses that produce the “bad for you” hormones and chemicals.These emotions arise because your brain detects (or thinks
it detects) danger from a potential rival.
Here’s how you can break the jealousy habit:
- Acknowledge the feeling, and be honest with yourself.
- Do not respond to the emotion by either overly professing your happiness for the person or by plotting to sabotage his or her new success.
- Don’t judge yourself a bad person for feeling jealousy; it’s entirely normal.
- Repeat, over and over, in your mind, “There is no danger, there is no threat; there is no danger, there is no threat.” Another’s success does not jeopardize you. Your focus on it only diverts attention from what is good in your life and from your own talents and successes.
- Write down on a piece of paper all the things that would change in your life if you were in the other person’s shoes. Once you have done that, read the list and understand that everything you wrote is pure conjecture—fantasy. No one can predict the future, so just tear up the list and move on to the next step.
- Get rid of the pieces of that paper! Dump them in a fire, toss them on the floor and vacuum them up, or put them in the trash—whatever. In other words, Let It Go. Just Let It Go!
These steps will work very nicely to vanquish jealousy or envy, even when you’re faced with rivals who are trying to one-up you with their successes.We have no idea just how much in control of our health and happiness we really are.When one looks closer at some of the natural instincts that appear automatically and break them down it becomes apparent that we can intervene against the automaticity of our brains and actually see the glory that resides with the power of our minds.Make the only person you are jealous of be yourself. Say to yourself, “If I were to see myself in a department store, or at work, or interacting with friends, I would be jealous of me.” Break the jealousy/envy habit and begin to make you the only person of whom you are jealous.You will have overcome a very big obstacle to health, happiness, and begin to live your everyday extraordinary.
© Dr. Charles F. Glassman, CoachMD