And We Lived Happy and Envied Ever After

There is something that wears people out more than time. More than fatigue. Perhaps more than sorrow. It is called envy and a personal investigation on its epidemiology reports a mind-boggling rate. According to the unlucky interviewees, who were targets of envy and abuse, a large number of individuals seems to be dominated, or I’d better say poisoned, by jealousy.
Maybe, you are wondering whether envied people boast something so enviable to earn them those frequent episodes of others’ frustration, but not at all. They actually appear to be average people, with some talent, but also a large repertoire of unresolved difficulties. So why do they provoke such rage? The explanation is as elementary as alarming: it is just because envy, beyond widespread, is generated by minimum pretexts.

The envied people bestow kindness and understanding, however, the more they are helpful to the envious, the more they raise their resentment, the more they look indifferent to provocation, the more they make the envious furious. Naively, they do not understand what weird mechanism connects their calm to another's anger in a relationship of inverse proportionality. Finally, they realize that people frequently envy the fortunes that you had not even realized you have. No kidding, envy is due to the most unthinkable things.

At the beginning such feeling are unexpected because envious individuals never express a positive appreciation, just subtle allusions or acid remarks, or even explicit criticisms about something you possess and they would like to have, but they would never admit. And we, champions of ingenuity, suffer this show of snobbery and we do not understand the reasons of certain displays of superiority and the need to flaunt that they count more than we do, to try to crush us to feel worth. We realize we are involved in a fierce competition and wonder: but when did this rivalry started? Why are they fighting with me while I'm here, happy and peaceful? And, by the way, weren’t we great friends?!

Yes, that's because the survey shows some data even more disturbing than the occurrence of envy: the identity of the envious. Well, nine times out of ten, the real jealous, the one who really would like to hurt us, is someone very close to us, someone who knows us and sees our potential, perhaps better than we do, as we are too self-critical to recognize our own talent. So, we suddenly realize that our best friend, a family member, a colleague, or even an unsuspecting partner is envying us bitterly. As often happens, the enemy is next to us: the one we would never expect.

We still cannot believe that the friend we have always trusted might have harbored that bad emotion against us, or that the partner to whom we have devoted our life and, perhaps, who has often discredited us, underneath has never really felt equal to us. This is shocking truth. We feel betrayed. We feel disoriented, too. Yet, until we were in trouble, the envious felt more than happy in our company. It is said that a true friend is recognized in times of need: unfortunately, however, even in the darkest moments we must be wary of those who are next to us just because they seek to shine more.

It is true that if we are the object of so much envy by those who know our capacities well, then our prices can only be upward. Maybe we will end up admitting to be worth much more than we have ever dared to believe. It is said "many enemies, much honour", so we might be more than proud of the enemies we encounter. If they try to hurt us, it is just because they are afraid of us. If they want to compete with us, it is because we are a comparison of whom they wish they could be equal. If they criticized us behind our backs, it is because they are so cowardly they have no courage to face us.

Sometimes it is sufficient that we follow our way quietly to be detested. This is because some frustrated people cannot stand to see others feeling good and they want everyone to be tormented by their own discomfort. Instead of dealing with their misery and groped to improve their lives, they prefer trying to ruin other people's ones. As well as regrettable, this is an unintelligent attitude, as they may enjoy more concrete benefits by devoting time and energy in self-improvement, maybe learning something by the people they envy.

Esteem and admiration are healthy passions that bring a precious gift: learning by imitation. Envy, on the contrary, is only a poison, which does not help in personal growth, but makes people petty and pathetic and, above all, make them lose sight of their goals. The envious people fight for the destruction of others rather than their own realization, as they are afraid to look at themselves and prefer focusing their attention on the others, searching for scapegoats for their misery. Behind rivalry, arrogance and unjustified aggressive behaviours, there is a deep sense of inadequacy, lacking self-esteem and fragile personality.

Therefore, if you are a victim of oppressive envious people, have pity on them, but never deny your talents in order to protect their weak nature . What you can do is to direct them to a good psychotherapist: it is not violating your identity that your oppressors will improve theirs: you have a compassionate heart, but you have not got the vocation of the holy martyr, have you?!

Thus, my advice is the following one: do not make the mistake of keeping a low profile just to pander to the whims of envious individuals. Do not be afraid to show who you are, namely brilliant and talented. This does not mean to be arrogant or conceited, it means to do justice to yourself, to give yourself the opportunities you deserves, with no fear of upsetting the mood of someone who has inferiority complex. Shine, and with all due respect to everyone, go on to head up and if, so moving, you lose some false friends who will be blinded by your light, you will deal with it as you will finally know that you can count on yourself.

Marzia VaccaroI Like Italy

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