The hardest ones are those who have no desire.
When I was little, I remember feeling envious of my friends who had nice sneakers or new bikes. As much as I tried to suppress these feelings, I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of jealousy. As I grew older, envy didn’t seem to fade along with the formation of maturity. A colleague’s promotion, a fancy car racing by, even a bit more spotlight thrown my coworkers’ way… these are all things that can trigger feelings of envy.
A parallel feeling to envy is fear. While fear bears a sense of neutrality, Catholicism even considers envy as one of the seven deadly sins. However, research has shown that envy is a universal emotion that is experienced by people all around the world. But while it may be a natural part of being human, that doesn’t mean that we have to let it consume us or control our actions. In this speech we’ll explore the causes and effects of envy and some strategies for tackling it and living a more fulfilling life.
As hard as it may be to admit, we all experience envy at some point or another. Whether we’re envious of someone’s success, their good looks, their relationships, or anything else, it’s a feeling that we can’t completely avoid. But while it may be a natural emotion, that doesn’t mean that we have to let it consume us or control our actions. One way to tackle envy is by cultivating gratitude for what we already have. It’s easy to get caught up in the grass-is-always-greener mentality, but taking a step back and appreciating what we have can help to put things into perspective. For example, one of the most famous advocates for gratitude was the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle. In his Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle wrote that “to be grateful is to be conscious of having received a benefit from someone, and to be conscious of this is to be conscious of having a debt of gratitude, which must be discharged.” In other words, when we’re grateful for what we have, we’re less likely to focus on what we don’t have and more likely to appreciate the good things in our lives. And while it may not be easy to cultivate gratitude, it’s definitely worth the effort.
Another way to tackle envy is by focusing on creating a better world rather than a better self. It’s easy to get caught up in the self-help industry and constantly strive for personal…