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Mindy Kelly

Something funny happened to me Thursday night. I felt something I had never felt before. For the first time in my entire life, I was jealous of someone. I think.

I had to google its definition just to make sure the feeling was real: feeling resentment against someone because of thatperson’s rivalry, success, or advantages. The “jealousy” only lasted for about five minutes, but it was five long minutes of shameful self-loathing. Because the only resentment I felt was towards myself.

I’ve admired women all my life. Their beauty, their confidence, their talent. The way it seems as if they just breeze through life like a dandelion seed blowing in the wind. But never in my life have I thought, “Wow, I wish I could be her for a day.” Never in my life, until last Thursday.

I was with my girl having a beer when she told me that a mutual friend of ours had joined Match.com. Now I wasn’t jealous because she found a whirlwind romance on an internet dating site. I wasn’t jealous because this woman was beautiful. I wasn’t even jealous that her breast were naturally like a brand new set of perky implants. I was jealous that she was able to demand six-figures from a partner, because that’s how much she made herself. Not necessarily demand, but put it out there nevertheless.

What surprised me and upset me the most, was the fact that I even cared. I always knew she mad good money. Until recently, money was never an issue. At least not in the way it was this time. This time, it was not a necessity. The concern wasn’t about paying bills on time, living comfortably instead of paycheck to paycheck, or providing for my loved ones when in need. The concern was as shallow as me being able to check the salary range box marked “$90,000-$110,000” in a Match.com profile just because I could.

Ugh.

I told my boy that I was writing this post, but wasn’t quite sure how to end it. He suggested that maybe I talk about how it’s OK to be jealous sometimes. That sometimes, it can be a good thing.

“Can it really?” I said. “Actually, I take it back. You shouldn’t compare yourself to anyone,” he said. That’s what I thought. 

And that’s the thing. “If you wouldn’t compare yourself to someone else to make yourself feel better, why on Earth would you compare yourself to someone else to make yourself feel worse?

Jealousy can unfortunately be an excellent motivator, but it will never allow you to be happy with your achievements. There will always be someone with a better position or higher salary. If you do things for them and not yourself, you will never be satisfied. And what’s the use of doing anything if it doesn’t make you happy?

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