The rate at which other people grow has nothing to do with you. Yet, when someone appears to be growing exponentially and your opportunity feels at an all time low, it’s hard not to be envious.
Logically we know that you can’t compare two entirely different people with two entirely different stories, but when you’re working your ass off for months to grow into the next level and Suzie Q comes out of nowhere with seemingly immediate success, dammit if it doesn’t send you into a total spiral of, “Why is it so hard for me?!”
So, what can you do to avoid those dreaded moments of growth envy?
Don’t worry, my love, I’ve outlined tips for you below to make sure that you come back to the truth about you—you’re on your own journey, and no one is doing better than you at your journey.
1. Keep your eyes on your own mat.
In yoga, instructors direct you to keep your eyes off of everyone else in class and on yourself, because your intention when you walked in that yoga room was YOU, not Suzie Q.
Granted, when the instructor guides you into crow pose and Suzie Q holds up her body with uber toned arms and rock solid abs, it’s easy to envy the grace and strength that Suzie Q has.
The beautiful thing about yoga is that no matter what your position is compared to Suzie Q, as long as you’re both focused on moving to your next level, both people receive the same exact benefits.
That means that it might look a little different on you, but as long as you’re doing your very best (in yoga or in business), both you and Suzie Q are graced with the same level of benefits that the world has to offer.
2. Make them human.
I found myself on twitter for an hour diving into the many web and social media pages of a woman who seemed so far beyond me I couldn’t take it. I evaluated myself against her total followers, her website copy, and my assumptions of how much more money she made.
I created a whole story around the woman, and an hour later I realized I knew absolutely nothing about her.
So, rather than sit in envy I decided to make her human again, and I asked if she’d be interested in a Skype coffee date with me. Much to my surprise, she agreed.
I learned a major lesson during that Skype session: Everyone is working their ass off for something, and if it seems like it’s easy for them it’s because they’ve branded it well.
Rather than sit in envy of someone behind a computer screen, reach out to them in a way that helps you to see that they, too, are human.
3. Be inspired, not paralyzed.
Envy is no different than fear–it can be inspiring or it can be paralyzing.
Whenever you feel envious of someone, ask yourself, “What are they awakening in me that I would love to do, have, or be?”
Did they leave their job to pursue their dream full time? Create a plan to leave your job in the next three months. Do they have 100,000 Twitter followers? Ask people what you can do to increase your following, and get to work.
Inspiration is useless until it’s paired with action that moves you toward a worthy goal. The truth is that each one of us is creating the plan as we go. There’s no magical success route.
So, if someone strikes a bit of growth envy in you, rather than sitting back and pouting that it’s so much easier for them, use that envy to focus on your next level, connect with great people, and be inspired to move even further toward your dream today.