Written by: Rachael Webster – Business Coach
If you read this introduction already, just scroll down and start reading about Envy, otherwise it is recommended that you read the introduction bellow.
Let’s analyze how these common vices can affect your business and your overall income. You may think that the concept of deadly sins is a religious one and do not apply to you, but you may call them negative tendencies if you want. The fact is that you can find them in more or less intensity within most people.
You may not realize that one of these tendencies may be affecting you until I show you the details. If you realize that there is a problem, I will also give you the solution so you can fix it. I will explain and compare now the most common negative tendencies among people with their corresponding opposite virtues.
Before we start, I need to tell you something . . .
I.Most sins arise from: FEAR.
II.Most virtues arise from: LOVE.
III.Sins, vices and negative tendencies demonstrate weakness, while virtues demonstrate strength.
In my opinion the biggest virtue of all is COURAGE/CONFIDENCE, because it is the direct fruit of love, which dissipates fear and sow all other virtues in human’s hearts.
This is a series of articles about this subject. The whole series contain the following articles . . .
– ENVY –
This is a very destructive sin. It has to do with jealousy and malice. It is perverted love. To feel envy is to love other people’s things, status, skills, character, luck, etc; but this love is obsessive. You want that which other people have and you want it badly. If you can’t get it, then you start hating the people that have that which you want.
When it comes to envy, there is no limit. People can envy anything and everything. Individuals that have this tendency imagine things about others which aren’t true. It is hard to deal with them, because they feel bad about you already. They may think that you don’t deserve what you have. They see ghosts in other people that aren’t real. They judge and criticize without reason. They resent your prosperity.
This tendency is associated with the desire to see others fail and come to harm. Often when you feel envy, you also feel that person who is awakening those feelings, deserves to be punished. You perceive that somehow they hurt you in an invisible way, but you don’t have prove or reason enough to fight against them and that makes you even angrier.
You just want to fight or get rid off these fastidious people. You want to put them down. The envious individual believes that others are too proud of themselves. They can not stand proud people. The funny thing is that many haters, are also very proud of themselves, which makes it even harder for them to cooperate with others.
They want to have what other people have and they want it now. They suffer because of this. They can not resist the prosperity that others receive. The truly envious person seeks the harm of others. Their pleasure is to see other people’s fail. If you feel envy for someone, anything that person does to you, to bother you, will be magnified several hundreds or thousands of times. Anything that person does to you, to help you, will be seen with suspicious eyes.
You believe the person you envy is evil. If they help you in some way, you may feel bad about it. Why would they want to truly help you, if they are evil, right? They are scum. They have everything made up for them and you have nothing while you have to work a lot for the pittance that you get.
Can you see how this tendency gets you far away from prosperity? Instead of focusing on building your own wealth, you spend time thinking, judging, criticizing and telling defamations about the people you envy. You spend time unproductively and you reap what you sow. Then you don’t get what you want. In fact you put it far away.
The Bible says: “Do not covet your neighbor’s house, do not covet your neighbor’s wife . . . nor anything that is your neighbor’s.” One of the reasons people steal is because they feel envy of others. They want what other people have, they can’t get it by other means, so they just steal it.
There are some things that can’t be stolen though, like an individuals’ character, age, “luck”, intelligence. I think this makes the jealous person even more jealous, because they know that they won’t be able to steal those things. The haters can not love. They are angry, sad, frustrated.
Based on this fact, the thing they hate the most is to see the person they hate happy. If they perceive that despite their efforts, you keep on loving other people, everything you do and you are joyous in life, they will feel like dying. Remember that envy is an unjustifiable desire to harm others. When someone feels envy, the only justification for this desire to do evil is that they want other people’s stuff and they can’t have it, so they hate the people because of this.
Envy is undistinguishable from pride at times, because to feel envy you must compare yourself to others. Then you say: “He/she has something that I don’t have. I want it, and I want it badly! I don’t care about working for it. I just want it! Why does he/she has it and I can’t get it? This makes me so mad. I will change my mind. I will work twice as hard to get it, and if I still can’t get it, then I will hate them to death.”
As you can see, envy is competitive. If you do not compare to others and you feel happy with what you have, you do not need to covet other people’s stuff. Also, keep in mind that other kind of envy arise completely out of fear. It happens when you are above, in a high position or situation and you don’t want others to reach you there.
In this case you fear that they take your place, so you envy their sudden prosperity. The point with envy is that the hate it produces have no justification. You can envy other people’s prosperity even if you are more prosperous than they are.
You should not fear envy. Some people fear that haters may damage them in some way. They call it the evil eye. This superstitious believe exists since Egyptians’ time. Haters can harm you, that’s true. Even if you are an atheist and you don’t believe in the spiritual world, you must understand that when someone have secret unjustifiable bad feelings against you, they could secretly do a great deal of evil to you just to put you “down.”
On the other hand, you should not fear envy. The reason is that when you fear anything, the fear opens the door to other negative tendencies. The Bible shows that “we are not supposed to fear people, we are supposed to love people.” If you can persevere in love, haters will burn away in their own fire. Your purpose must not be though to make them suffer, because they are suffering a lot already due to their attitude.
Now, let’s talk about how you can apply all this knowledge to your business. Let’s start by saying that you can not completely block the envy that people feel for you. You can drastically reduce it though by implementing some procedures.
Do not show off! Live a normal life without trying to pretend to be better than others. If you are wealthy, enjoy your wealth. Do not hide it and fear that you would offend somebody. Fear will arise other negative tendencies within you. Enjoy your wealth, but do not flaunt it. If you are truly wealthy, you won’t need to seek other people’s envy, they will envy you anyway.
If you like jewelry, buy jewelry. Now for example, let’s say that you just purchased a new ring and went to a party with your business partners. It is a very expensive ring and you decide to start showing off. So, you put your hand in such a way that everybody sees the diamond and says: “Wow I want that diamond!” Do you get the point?
Even if you are humble, some people would still want the diamond, but by not showing off you will reduce the envy other’s feel for you. The same with everything else: your house, your car, your business, your profits. Some people show off because they fear to be inferior. They want to intimidate. In my opinion showing off is a sign of immaturity, excessive pride and weakness.
Some people are generous enough that when they find out someone is coveting something they have, they give it to them. For example, let’s say that you buy a laptop computer. You have a high annual income, so this item seems relatively inexpensive for you. Then someone visits you and start coveting your computer. They show obvious signs of envy. You just give the computer to them.
Many times this cuts off the envy they feel for you. The person becomes your friend. They stop hating you and they stop loving your stuff. They now have your stuff and “love” you. This may seem like a joke for most people out there, because most people are not willing to do this. There are exceptions though, and I have seen individuals who are generous enough to behave in such a way.
The point is that even small gifts can make the difference. It can change the way someone thinks about you. Small gifts do not necessarily cost money. It could be just a matter of attitude, like when the jealous person truly needs a favor from you. If they truly hate you, they may come to you only when they have no other choice. That’s your chance to show them your generosity.
There is a thin line between weakness and generosity. If you give because you fear, that shows weakness. If you give because you love, that shows strength. Giving not always has to do with money. There are many other aspects like sharing your time, teaching a skill, improving the life of others in some way, etc. I will talk more about giving in other article on this series.
Now, it is important that you don’t let other people rip you off. As a strong business person you don’t have to contemplate any kind of injustice. Do not argue with liars. Send them out. Stay away. Resist evil people and they will desist and leave.
You are not supposed to give anybody what you need for your own support and maintenance. The example that I show above works better with people that are not asking you for anything. They may show obvious signs of envy, but they do not request anything from you. They just resent that they can’t have your stuff.
Now if someone comes to you with that “you have too much and I have too little” (so you have to share) attitude, you should not give them anything. Such an attitude shows not only envy, but also arrogance (pride). Opportunists may be looking for the chance to dig generous souls. Don’t give them that chance, even if you watch them leave saying things like: “greedy bastard!”
There is a stereotype about wealthy people. Once you are rich, people automatically tend to think you are selfish and greedy. This is specially true for those who tend to envy others. It is often better to share your stuff with people who have not requested anything from you; with people that do not try to trick you, deceive you, lie to you, ask from you, etc.
That’s why I say: do not give too much! If you are too generous, haters may hate you more because of your generosity. You can not completely change the way everybody feels about you. On the other hand, if you sow the good seed, you will reap the good fruit.
Imagine yourself very wealthy and very generous at the same time. Imagine that you bless some haters by offering them for free some of the things they hate you for, to cut off some of their envy, just for fun. Then they leave your place saying: “Wow, this greedy bastard is very rich for sure, because he/she even gave me some of his/her stuff.” Then they do not get satisfied and after a few days they come back for more.
Also, keep in mind that some people may feel offended if you offer them something for free. If you are truly wealthy, they may feel that they can not reciprocate the favor. For example, if you give them something too expensive and they are not opportunists, all the opposite, they have some sort of inferiority complex, they may feel bad for this and hate you more.
Being rich is not as easy as it may seem. There are many “rare” feelings associate to wealth. Unless you learn how to deal with them (your own feelings and those of others), wealth may burn you and bring you sadness instead of happiness and satisfaction.
Now, let me mention this before I finish. On the example above, you have a better choice than to give the laptop computer yourself to the person that is feeling envy. If you can afford to give the item (whatever it is: a ring, dress, sunglasses, computer, etc) and you feel happy doing so, you may choose to do it secretly.
For example, in the example above, if you know that the person do not have a laptop computer already, and you can afford to give them one, you may purchase it and have a third friend promise you he/she won’t tell this other person, then ask him/her to give the item to the person for free. This way the glory won’t be yours and the person that receives the item do not feel in debt with you.
This requires a level of generosity, spirituality, etc, a.k.a.: Love, that most people do not have. In the other hand, it feels so good to do things like these that it can’t be described with words. It is like if God himself would touch your soul and say: “Thank you. I am taking note.”
This is the opposite of malice. On the example above, you just did a secret act of kindness. Envy opposes love. Love seeks the good of others for their own sake. It is kind and compassionate.
On the example above, the key is to make sure that the person receiving the item never finds out that you were the source of their happiness. They may come to you and show you the item. From their point of view they may think: “You see. You are not better than me anymore.” From your point of view you may think: “I feel so happy that I had the opportunity to bless you.”
Now, to finish this article I will talk about how to heal the envy that you may feel for others. I have realized that something which heals envy is to give. It does it both ways. Giving is a direct fruit of Love, which dissipates all fears and turn negative tendencies into virtues.
If you realize that you feel envy for some people (you hate them without reason), you may find the following technique useful. Do something for them. Do something that really, from the bottom of your heart, can be interpreted as a truly act of love. Let me explain.
Let’s say that you envy an employee because he seems smarter than you while you are the business owner. Do something for that employee to help increase his/her knowledge or intelligence. If you envy your friend because he has a house and you have none, offer him to cut the grass on his backyard for free. Do the same with everything else you feel envy for.
Love defeats envy many times over!
How can you apply all this specifically to business? Simple. Business people have to deal with the problem of envy almost on an everyday basis. This includes their own life and the envy they may feel. Also the envy and jealousy they may perceive from others around them. This is a destructive invisible tendency which is very dangerous and even contagious. Keep it under control.
If you read the other articles on this series, you will realize that the common characteristic behind this negative tendencies is: selfishness. If you are absolved with yourself, you will show one or more of these tendencies on your daily actions. The solution is to live a less selfish lifestyle. By changing your attitude, you may change the outcome of your actions. You may be amazed at the results and you will feel happier and successful.