‘OMG Becky, look at her butt!’…I think you know the rest. Most people remember this tune as a tribute to the mighty booty, but those first spoken words have always stuck with me as a classic example of jealousy. The valley-esque girls with their teased up hair seemingly have it all, including a pancake tush (assumption). The one thing they didn’t have was that BUTT! They coveted curves, and the jealousy spewed from their mouths, they call the woman on the pedestal draped in taxi cab yellow a prostitute for crying out loud!
Sidebar: this video is hilarious but also so gross. Especially that cheeky mountain range…WOW. Sir Mix A Lot is a millionaire. Sigh.
Aaaaaaand we’re back! Jealousy, yeah. Envy can tear you apart. It’s torn me to shreds, more than once. I can attribute many social anxieties to jealousy. Let’s break down how covetous behavior can take over your life:
1-Assume someone has more than you do, whether it be smarts or money or sass.
2-Covet what they have. Wish they didn’t have it. Play mind games on them to knock them down (so evil, but hey, jealousy breed pettiness).
Step 3 goes down a forked road, what path do you usually take?
3A-Decide you’re not good enough to talk to them or try to be there friend. They are above you and out of your league. You give up and feel small.
3B-You put that enviable person in your sights. You ruin their world and talk down to them, your jealousy fuels your bully fire. You have no shame yet all the shame in the world.
No matter if you tend to participate in path 3A or 3B jealousy never wins. It doesn’t make you feel better at the end of the day. Envy allows your confidence to crumble, it will tear down your ideals (whether you know you have them or not). More so letting your innocence and tenderness melt away. People are inherently good, it can be hard to remember at times, but it is true. The world can harden us, but deep down there is goodness.
Let’s take it to Philippians 2:3-4, speaking to humility – 3 Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than ourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interest of others.
Modesty and jealousy don’t belong in the same boat, practicing humility will ground you and leave no room for envy. Imagine a life free of jealousy. Use that brain matter for something useful and positive rather than unfair comparisons.
Who are you jealous of? Is it hard to let go? Have you ever tried to dismiss your enviable thoughts? Here are a few tips to re train your jelly* brain:
1-Recognize you’re jealous. Admit it. Consider what consumes your mind, people we are jealous of inhabit our thoughts and make us feel less than. Pinpoint those trigger people.
2-Now that you know the culprit stop comparing yourself to them. Realize you are different people, likely with varying dreams and resources.
3-Consider the possibility that you may be feeling envious of that person because you crave their status or personal gains. Forget coveting them and get to know them! Suggest meeting up for coffee, ask how they achieved their success. They may even be willing to help you on your journey.
*What millennials say instead of ‘jealous’. The shortened term has the same amount of syllables though so I can’t really wrap my head abound this abbrev (see, I can do it too)! What I do know is that two awesome nineties songs are ‘Hey Jealousy’ and ‘She Don’t Use Jelly’. But that will just be our little secret since that hip, bearded generation was born after those quintessential alt rock songs debuted.