Be honest–do you find yourself getting jealous of a coworker’s success? The person who was hired just one week before you always has something nice to say, and turns heads when they walks into the room. It seems like people are really listening to them in meetings, and is it your imagination or do they seem to get better assignments than you?
Our individual relationship to power and success usually dictates how we see both ourselves and others. When someone is consumed by self-doubt or lack of confidence, she often compares herself to those who appear more content, successful and influential.
It is necessary to give up comparisons to others if you want to be successful in your profession. Without contrasts, jealousy and covetousness can’t exist; not only are these activities associated with ugliness, but they will also keep you from becoming successful. That’s because success depends on high self-confidence.
But how do you free yourself from the clutches of jealousy and envy to improve your self-esteem? Here’s what works for me:
Turn your attitude around
The next time you find yourself jealous of a colleague’s success, take a step back and realign your thinking. instead of fixating on what she has that you don’t, appreciate all the good things in your own life. (Click here to tweet this thought.)
Consider how you were hired because of your many assets, such as your excellent academic record and experience. Be grateful for having a great job that will lead to an even better future career.
Give others what you most desire
A little-known secret to success: if you want others to appreciate your work, take the time to genuinely appreciate theirs. If you value what you do, extend that same consideration to those around you. Give people your full attention and focus, and watch as your own career skyrockets in response. When we let go of competitive tendencies, good things have a way of coming back around.
Learn from a rival’s positive points
If you’re stuck in a jealous mindset, use this quick tip to change your tune. Instead of focusing on what you lack, redirect your attention to what you can learn from the person who has the success that you want. As Yoko Ono said, “Transform jealousy to admiration, and what you admire will become part of your life.”
Wish a rival well
This may not be easy, but try to see the world from that person’s perspective. This will help you feel compassion and understanding for them.
When you think to yourself, “I hope she succeeds and gets everything she needs and wants out of this job,” letting go of jealousy becomes easy and success will follow.
When you quit comparing yourself to others, you can finally focus on your own life and achievements instead of worrying about someone else’s good fortune or feeling bad about yourself.
If you don’t completely mean what you say during this exercise, act like you do until it becomes natural. Often, having the right intention and choosing the higher ground (even if you’re not totally there yet) will lead to a change in attitude.
Working towards self-compassion and gratefulness will help you become the best version of yourself. Every time you take a step in that direction, no matter how small, give yourself credit!