Fighting Jealousy: Slaying My Green-Eyed Monster

When our air conditioner broke, we had to turn the air off for a few hours. It happened to be one of the hottest, most humid days Chicago has seen in a while. As I was coming into the house from outside, I felt the cool relief of our well-insulated home. The humidity was gone and the temperature felt lower.

Shortly after coming inside, I went down to the basement to help my boyfriend fix the air conditioner. Not 30 minutes later, I walked back upstairs to grab something, and was hit with a wall of hot and stuffy air from the exact same space that was cool less than an hour before.

The temperature hadn’t changed drastically. There was no rapid rise in humidity. But coming to that same middle ground from the opposite end of the temperature spectrum modified my perspective. I felt that the temperature was warmer because I was experiencing it from the cold angle while earlier it felt cooler because I had experienced it from the hot angle.

Shortly after experiencing this weird body temperature conundrum, my brain started connecting some crazy dots. That same physical change in perspective can be applied to emotional perspective. It was an analogy that physically made sense to me. And there are so many other ways to consider how your perspective affects your life.

The same situation can be completely different for two people or even the same person at a different time in his or her life. It all depends on our current perspective.

slaying my green eyed monster

I used to get ridiculously,  unequivocally jealous of other people. I coveted what they had, whether it was more blog followers, a book deal, money when I was broke, a relationship when I was single, vacations, etc. My jealousy held no bounds. I would think horrible things, like why can’t I have that? or I deserve that; why is it theirs, not mine?

My green-eyed monster was uuuuuuugly. I hated her, but I didn’t know how to slay her. I knew I was in the wrong, but for the life of me couldn’t make it stop.

And then one day, it hit me over the head like a pile of rocks. It was recent, and I’m ashamed to admit how recent. But it was something the unbelievably beautiful Samara said. At the wrong time, her words may have gone completely over my head, but at the time she said them, I was in a very solid place. I was surrounded by strong, brilliant women who were supporting each other. It was after I began really reading a lot of deep, heartfelt essays that put my own world into a different light. I had a new perspective and didn’t even realize it had happened.

So when Samara said something along the lines of, Why does anyone feel the need to compete with each other? We should be building each other up. There is enough success for all of us.

And oh my God did that resonate through every fiber of my being. It made sense on such a deep and powerful level, that I began to see more clearly the way to remove that green-eyed monster from my soul.

Even further still, the aphorism, “a rising tide lifts all boats,” which is often used in reference to economic changes was mentioned countless times this summer in reference to the writing community I call home. If we support each other, cheer each other on, help each other out, we are a part of the tide. And this can be applied to any aspect of your life.

We can all slay our green-eyed monsters.

Does this mean I never get jealous? Of course not. I’m only human. But I can be jealous without releasing that ugly kraken from within me. Instead, I try really really hard to isolate those twinges of jealousy before they overtake all of me.

When has your perspective changed how you react or respond to a situation? How do you battle jealousy? What inner-demons are you fighting with?

This piece was originally published on Sisterwives Speak.

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Reasons You Should Probably Never Talk About Money (With People. Do I Need to Clarify That?)

I’ve decided to devote a little discussion to money or better yet, why people shouldn’t talk about money (Does that make this blog post ironic? Someone ask Alannis Morrisette for me). They say that money is the root of all evil…so does that make evil the money tree? 

Rich or poor, you should probably avoid talking about cold, hard cash…here’s why.

7 reasons not to talk about money. Ever.

Very SERIOUS reasons not to talk about money. Ever.

  • Someone may get jealous of your larger pay check and find a way to steal it. Probably with ninja stars and boomerangs.
  • You might get punched. Especially if you make eleventy billion dollars and are trying to use an expired coupon. And then arguing about it with the cashier.
  • If you’re trying to use food stamps (or your state/country’s equivalent), and you roll your groceries out to a Lexus…I’m going to judge you for the rest of your life. Even though I don’t know your name. And I might even blog about you. You know, quite frankly, I’m glad I don’t know your name.
  • Making 6, 7 or 8 figures is great. We’re all really happy for you. But if you’re single (oh hell, if you’re making 7 or 8 figures, I don’t care if you’ve got a family of 10), you should never. Ever. Ever. Ever. Talk about how you have no money. Because if you have no money, it’s your own fault. Unless it’s all in savings so you can retire at 40. Because I can TOTALLY respect that. Sort of. Okay, fine. I’m just really jealous and I might want to find my ninja stars and boomerangs.
  • People will feel sorry for you if you have less money. And they might then give you money. Hmmm…. Maybe you should talk about money…Let’s think on that one.
  • No matter how poor you think you are, you never know what someone else’s circumstances are. You could be standing next to someone who ran away with the circus, finally escaped from a relationship with the bearded lady, and has three circus peanuts and a clown nose to their name. Not that I’ve ever experienced this…but you know…it could happen.
  • Blaming [insert politician or organization] here isn’t really helpful for anyone. And no one wants to get into your bullshit trap political arguments anyways. You stop that right now.

What are your thoughts about money talk? Have you ever wanted to run away to the circus? Do you love circus peanuts the way I love circus peanuts? Who wants to let me borrow their boomerang?

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!

Confession Friday: My Jealousy Complex Leads to the Project: Fairy Tales

Yes, it’s true. I have a jealousy complex. Honestly, I think that most people do…

I’ve always been a little bit jealous of the majority of my pals (I mean, they all have qualities that I admire–that’s why they’re my pals!), jealous of girls who are skinnier than me, prettier than me, taller than me, shorter than me, have more money than me, are smarter than me…you get the point. Jealousy. It’s a problem.

I love my best friend with all my heart. Alas, I am just slightly jealous of her brilliance (and her adorableness, and her amazing-ness). My favorite Word Worm over at Words for Worms proclaimed yesterday that she was participating in a super cool reader-blog-dealie… in which everyone reads a fairy tale of their choosing and then reads other versions/modernized versions of said fairy tale and discusses them in future blog posts (sometime in early 2013).

Obviously, I wanted to play. I realize that I am not a book blog. Or a reader blog. But I love reading. In fact, I have several posts dedicated to books. OK. I have two posts dedicated to books. But still… you get it.

Luckily for me, in her post, she directed me, just as I shall direct you to Project: Fairy Tale if you, too, would like to be as cool as the other readers and writers and play the fairy tale game.

The rules for said game are simple: Choose fairy tale. Read fairy tale. Read 3 like-stories. Write. Write. Write. Write. Excitement! I happen to have just the book for the assignment!

Classic Fairy Tales

I knew this book would come in handy one day!

So, I made my way over to the Project: Fairy Tale page, perused the already chosen stories, and decided on Rumpelstiltskin.

Rumpelstiltskin Fairy Tale

I’ve always been a fan

As Rumpel is my favorite character on Once Upon a Time, and it was one of my favorite Faerie Tale Theatre episodes starring Shelly Duvall, I got super stoked to look into his tale a little deeper…and find more stories like his.Wikipedia gave me a few suggestions, but I’m going to try to find some more.

So I’m pumped! I’ve already got a bazillion fairy tale esque blog post ideas brewing in my brain. The month this blog circle goes live is going to be so so fun.

From slightly feigned/slightly real jealousy to fun with fairy tales…does that mean a happy ending?

 

Hey! Did you know you can buy my book on Amazon? 37 women wrote about the struggle for perfection, and I'm one of 'em. Go check it out!