Why jealousy will get you nowhere in life

Jealousy is a very ugly emotion. No matter how hard we try, there’s just no escaping it. If it’s better looks better, sounds better, feels better than whatever we’ve got, then we want it at all costs. As Lope de Vega says, ‘There is no greater glory than love, nor any greater punishment than jealousy’. In this article, we’ll be talking about why jealousy will get you nowhere in life. We’ll cover: 

  • Why do we get jealous?
  • What happens when we act on that jealousy? 
  • How can we minimize jealousy?
why jealousy gets you nowhere in life

Why do we get jealous? 

One word. Insecurity. When we don’t value ourselves, it’s easy to think that life would be better if we had what others have. If only I had curves like that model, then people would like me. If only I made six figures, then people would like me. If only. If only. If only.  Speaking from personal experience, there are so many things that we can be insecure about.

But do you notice a common trend in those statements? There is always a motive (conscious or not) to get the approval of others. We sometimes do this because we don’t have enough internal validation or simply put, we don’t love ourselves enough. Jealousy isn’t just a case of I want. It’s more of I want because I don’t feel enough. It’s an attempt to fill the hole of validation deep within us. What do you think happens when use jealousy to fill that pit? 

Useful articles to take a look at!

Insecurity — Jealousy Part 4. When you’re more likely to abandon you…

How Low Self-Esteem Affects Relationships

What happens when we act on that jealousy? 

I’m going to be honest here. Whenever I get jealous, I get motivated to act quickly. I’m more determined in my actions and I start to push myself towards a goal. The goal to get what I don’t have. Money. A better body. Attention from the opposite sex. Whatever it may be. 

At first, you’ll make some progress. People will probably notice, and that validation we desperately desire will come trickling in. However, this is where we fall into a trap.

jealousy will get you nowhere

Some of us will get addicted to that external validation like it’s mana from heaven. I won’t even blame you if it happens. Receiving praise/approval is an addicting feeling. However, once we get a hit of it, it fuels our jealousy even more. The more we have, the more we want, creating an endless cycle. However, with any drug, it loses its potency over time, and that addicting external validation eventually doesn’t incite the same high. 

The feelings of emptiness that you were trying to ignore for so long will pop right back up as if nothing ever happened. This is why I truly believe that jealousy will get you nowhere in life. It traps you in this endless cycle. Until you realize how to break free. 

Useful articles to take a look at!

Social Validation – 3 Quick Questions To Find Your Why

How to minimize jealousy 

You can never get rid of jealousy. You’re human. It’s simply going to happen, no matter how hard you try to avoid it. However, you can learn to minimize and control those jealous feelings whenever they pop up. This is best done by replacing that burning addiction for external validation with some internal validation of your own. Here are a few ways you can do this. 

why jealousy gets you nowhere in life

Acknowledge your gifts 

Most of us don’t realize how talented we are. Probably because we’re bombarded with ‘perfection’ on social media. Chances are that if you look hard enough at your skills, you’ll find that thing that a) you’re pretty good at and b) excites you. 

When you find that thing. You hold on to it for dear life and cultivate it. Dedicate a significant amount of time to building up those skills. By doing this, slowly but surely, you’ll start to develop confidence in yourself and your ability. It doesn’t mean that you won’t get jealous of others for being better than you. It simply means that you can focus on your own path of progress.  

Be present 

I know it’s so incredibly easy to imagine where you want to be in the future. But I want you to think about whether doing this is doing more harm than good. Are you placing unrealistic expectations on yourself forcing you to become impatient, and jealous of others? 

Take a deep breath. Get out of your head and simply embrace the present moment. Try not to think about all the things you don’t have yet. Simply be grateful for all the things that you do have now. Once you start taking this gratitude approach to life, feelings of jealousy will be few and far between. 

15 Stoic quotes on being present

Talk. It. Out 

Holding jealous feelings to yourself is a surefire way to start resenting the people around you. As always, I recommend talking to a healthcare professional where they can guide you through the root causes of your jealousy.  

But also, simply talking it out with the person you’re jealous of, can be an eye-opening experience. You’ll get the opportunity to break the illusion of them that you’ve built up in your head. They’re not Gods because they may excel at one thing more than you. You may even find out that they’re envious of some of your skills. Keeping clear communication about things like this will help avoid jealousy from building up over time! 


  • Why we get jealous? Answer – Low self-esteem
  • What happens when we act on that jealousy – Gets us nowhere as we try to fill a bottomless hole
  • How can we minimize jealousy? Build up that self-esteem and create internal validation for yourself!

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10 Replies to “Why jealousy will get you nowhere in life”

  1. Great post! As you said, we all experience jealousy in life but what sets people apart is how we deal with it. Some people use it as fuel to do better for themselves, and to make more money, for example. While others get into debt buying things they see other people having on social media.

  2. Love this post! And I hope that many people who deal with this emotion will read it, and learn from it, instead of taking it out on others. If you can recognize these feelings within yourself, you can actually learn from it, it can help you grow in life. But when you don’t this emotion is extremely harmful to yourself and the people around you.

  3. Thank you for this article—definitely an eye opener.

    As I feel jealousy creep in, I try to shut it down. Easier said than done.

  4. Love this. So much truth. Jealousy is never a good thing. It will never help you along the way and you’ll end up just feeling miserable.

  5. You hit the nail on the head – jealousy stems from insecurity. It is an ugly emotion that can really hinder one’s progress because they focus on others more than they should on themselves. Thanks for writing about this and sharing ways to handle it!

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