Follow Your…Envy?

Envy (noun): A feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.

Envy (verb): A desire to have a quality, possession, or other desirable attribute belonging to someone else.

“Envy is pain at the sight of another’s good fortune, stirred by ‘those who have what we ought to have.” -Aristotle

“Envy is one of the most potent causes of unhappiness.” -Bertrand Russell

Joseph Campbell talked about following your bliss and I’m suggesting you follow your…envy?

Say, what?

Okay, maybe not follow your envy. After all, it is one of the seven deadly sins. How about get curious with your envy. Bring awareness and investigate your feelings towards it. Thoroughly examine what it is specifically you are envious about.

Can you get past all the “bad”, superficial envy we’re warned about (fame, fortune, power, etc…)? The envy that will never fulfill or bring lasting joy? Can you remove the husk and get down to the heart of your envy? Perhaps you’re envious of the actual work someone’s doing. The process. Their day to day. Maybe you think to yourself, “I’d like to do that.” Not have something. Do something.

Okay, that’s interesting.

Maybe, just maybe, by getting curious about your envy and narrowing it down to the actual work itself, you might just have found a passion project. Somewhere to put your focus. And even more good news…if you’re willing to do the work–the hard, sometimes un-fun yet necessary, producing and leadership work–you can actually do it. It is within your control You can create for yourself and others an incredible and meaningful experience.

One that someone else, someday, might just be envious about too.

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