The root of Envy

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Chinkee Tan
Chinkee Tan

It’s unfair! Why does she have it, but I don’t?

You are luckier in life than I am.

Why does he get all the good things? I wish I were he.

Do you carry these sentiments?

If you do, you may have an issue with envy.

We may not want to admit it or maybe we just don’t even realize that we are envious of other people. Perhaps we ignore the feeling because we may think it is normal to feel this way. But if we don’t deal with envy in our hearts, resentment may begin to build up then we begin to be depressed, ungrateful and stressed.

How come there are people who are envious?

Why are there people who can’t seem to help but be filled with envy? What is the root of their

envy?

Here are some reasons:

DEPRIVED

Maybe they were deprived of a lot of things when they were growing up – not only of the things they wanted but also of the things they needed. So, when they see that other people are able to get and receive what they want without much effort, they become filled with envy.

COMPARISON

You probably always compare yourself with others. You want to have what your friends have.

You want to achieve what your colleagues have achieved. Let me ask you, if someone shaves off his hair, would you also do the same? It is a never-ending cycle of comparing yourself with others. In the end, it is a never-ending life of enviousness.

DISCONTENTMENT

You are not happy with your lot in life even if you are better off than others. You find no contentment in your own life. You are blinded by the things that you do not have and so you can’t see and appreciate the things you do have. You always question the things others have.

UNGRATEFUL

There is a song that goes, “Count your blessings. Name them one by one”. Like what I mentioned earlier, you are not contented and one big reason is because you do not know how to be grateful. Why don’t you try to count the blessings that you already have? I’m sure one whole day won’t even be enough to finish your list. If we only have the attitude of gratefulness, I’m sure there will be no place for envy in our heart and mind.

Are you envious of your officemate’s really expensive pair of shoes, while your own is only from the market bazaar? Don’t you realize that you are more blessed to even have feet to put your shoes on, while there are people who are born without feet?

There are so many things to be grateful for in this life. Try to list it down.

Whatever is the reason for your envy, I want you to know that you have a choice. We can live a life free of envy, if we want to. We are the only ones who can help ourselves against being envious persons. We start by stopping the comparison with others, learning to be content, focusing and learning to be grateful.

THINK. REFLECT. APPLY

What do you think is the reason for your enviousness?

Have you tried to count your blessings, seen and unseen?

Have you learned to be grateful?

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