How to Stop Comparing Yourself to Others and Overcome Jealousy

By Si’en

I Fell Into the Mire of Envy

In our life or work, when we see others are better than us at something, we would have difficulty in congratulating them and even would become jealous in our hearts. As envying others is bitter, none of us wants to have a taste of it, but we are often involuntarily plunged into it. I was just one living example who was once mired in a quagmire of envy.

Because of the need of the work, the advertising company I worked in made some personnel adjustments in the planning department. Overcome JealousyWhen knowing that Li was promoted to department manager by the leader, I was out of balance in my heart and thought: Why does the leader pay no attention to me at all? Before, Li was selected as a capable and responsible employee from our department to attend a training meeting. Why is she always the lucky dog? Since we do the same job and our performances are about equal, why does the leader directly put her in an important position without giving me any chances? I really come off that badly? No. My performance is not bad in our department. In what aspects is Li better than me? The more I thought, the more stuck I felt, to the extent that I didn’t want to see Li again. When seeing the leader who exalted her, I felt strained and even wanted to avoid her, as if she had offended me. I felt that there was a barrier among the three of us and that our relationships were frozen suddenly. The warm feelings among us disappeared completely. I was so demoralized and in no mood for work, just doing the work perfunctorily from day to day, while I didn’t admit defeat in my heart and thought: No. I can’t be in such poor spirits. I must work hard and make some achievements to show everyone that I am not only no worse than Li but even more excellent. It seemed that I got stuck in a quagmire, unable to extricate myself.

In the following days, my mind was occupied by this matter. While doing the work which I was familiar with and liked every day, I no longer felt at ease or happy but was exhausted. I couldn’t help but ask myself: What’s wrong with me?

The Judgment of the Truth Made Me Feel Ashamed

In struggle and helplessness, I thought that since I am a believer in God, I should bring my difficulty before God in prayer. And then I prayed to God, “O God! I am out of balance and miserable in my heart because I am envious of Li. May You enlighten me, guide me, and help me break from Satan’s net so that I can live with an open and upright heart.”

Then I read a passage of words in Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life, “If someone is better or more capable than us, we should appreciate him and learn from him. I like to contact with those who outshine me, who have talents and abilities, for I can learn new things and make up for my deficiencies when associating with them. There are no perfect people. … So are those who are jealous of others narrow-minded? There is an ancient Chinese story about Zhou Yu, who was jealous of Zhuge Liang’s ability. How was the jealous Zhou Yu in the end? He tormented himself to death and only lived to 36. Jealousy rots your moral character. Jealousy makes you die quickly or live a shorter life. Is it good to be narrow-minded or jealous? No good at all. Those who are petty, narrow-minded, or malicious will be laughed at by others and are unworthy to live. It does no good to be narrow-minded, that’s for sure. … Once you have a normal humanity, you’ll live happily and unrestrained. But if you are too mean, you will feel strained, painful and exhausted.”

After reading these words, I understood that being jealous was narrow-minded. Thinking of my own behaviors these days, I felt ashamed and thought: Does my living out have any likeness of a Christian? When seeing Li was better than me, I became jealous and developed a prejudice and had a separation toward her. I even struggled with her in my heart instead of accepting the fact and treating her correctly. Am I not so narrow-minded? Zhou Yu, having God-given abilities, was a great genius with dash and skill in the science of warfare. But his jealousy of Zhuge Liang led to his premature death, which was really a tragedy. I couldn’t help but sigh: Jealousy is actually a cancerous cell. If I can’t break free from it, I will be harmed by it for life and even be brought to ruin. The fellowship says, “If you are too mean, you will feel strained, painful and exhausted.” It was true. I was at ease and did my job with passion in the past. But because of my jealousy of Li, I became darkened and distressed in my heart, and had no mind to do anything but was in a sulk all day long. Moreover, I formed opinions about the leader who exalted Li, seething with discontent; I also competed against Li in secret to show others my ability and stand up for myself. I lived tiredly and painfully because of my complicated thoughts. Jealousy really did great harm to me. I almost got caught in the hidden trap of Satan. The fellowship says, “If someone is better or more capable than us, we should appreciate him and learn from him.” I thought carefully about these words. It’s true! If I could live thus, how happy and unrestrained my life would be!

I read a passage of God’s word: “Take the strengths of others and use them to offset your own deficiencies, watch how others live by God’s words and see whether or not their lives, actions and speech is worth learning from. If you regard others as less than you then you are self-righteous, self-conceited and are of benefit to no one.” I couldn’t help but begin to reflect upon myself: Why am I jealous of others? Is it not just because I am too arrogant and regard myself too highly? I think that I am better than anyone, indulging in self-admiration, so that I am not aware of myself and couldn’t see others’ strengths and merits. When others gained recognition, I would become dissatisfied and jealous and even torment myself. God’s word says: “Take the strengths of others and use them to offset your own deficiencies.” It is God’s requirement of us and also a code of conduct which we should comply with when getting along with colleagues at work. Since Li could be promoted, she must be better than me in some aspects. Then I calmed down and found that Li really has some strengths: She is of good caliber which enables her to grasp the specialized knowledge quickly, and she is also more serious about the work. If she is in charge of our department as the manager, our performance will be improved through her communication and discussion with us. It is a good thing. Moreover, Li is frank, straight and simple. Whenever she sees what others do and say might do harm to the work, she would point out their mistakes honestly to protect the interest of the company, not afraid of offending them, which is worthwhile to learn. At these thoughts, I came to realize that I was blinded by jealousy during this period of time, so I was unable to see Li’s strengths but only focused on venting my displeasure. What I revealed was a satanic corrupt disposition of arrogance. It not only did harm to myself but to others. I should live by God’s word and break free from envy to avoid being controlled by it. After understanding these, I felt relieved and bright within.

God’s Word Guided Me to See the Light

Later, I read a passage of God’s words: “The functions are not the same. There is one body. Each does his duty, each in his place and doing his very best, every spark of enthusiasm a flash of light, seeking maturity in life, thus will I be satisfied.” It says in Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life, “If God asks us to be grass, then we should be grass instead of a big tree. If you are a big tree, don’t try to be a tall building. Be what you are and keep your place, diligently pursue the truth and fulfill your duty properly. Living like this is the best, not tiring.”

God’s words and the words in Sermons and Fellowship on Entry Into Life made me suddenly see the light. God created us and gave us different qualities, strengths, and missions, so that existence of each of us has value and meaning. God knows best what I can do and what job I am capable of. The place arranged by Him is the most suitable and the best for me. However, I didn’t see God’s good will or have a grateful heart but was envious of others. How foolish and ignorant I was! As all things submit to the authority of God, I, a created being, should even more obey His ordination and play my role well in this life, thus realizing the value of my life. If God predestined me to be grass, I should be grass happily, fulfilling my function honestly in my place. Though I am an ordinary employee, I should do my job dutifully and be a responsible person. I should practice God’s word in each and every detail of my work and live out the likeness of a Christian to glorify God. If living in this way, I will be released and happy and also be approved by God. This is the most meaningful life. So why don’t I live like this?

The truth lighted up my heart and made me released and calm. I had a smile on my face. I came before God with a grateful heart and prayed, “O God! Thanks for enlightening and guiding me with Your words. The darkness in my heart is removed and I find my direction as a person. I am willing to conduct myself in a well-behaved manner, and work with my colleagues in one heart. I will do my duty in the place ordained by You and live out the likeness of a real man to satisfy Your will.”

Conducting Myself Dutifully, I Obtained God’s Blessings

Since then, I got a fresh start, as if my heart had gone through a baptism. I was no longer envious of Li but set my attitude right and threw myself into my work again. Though the work was busier and more complicated than before, I felt relieved and happy within. When I worked hard in my position, not only was my performance improved, but also I had learned how to conduct myself and how to join forces with my colleagues for common progress at work.

Through my experience, I appreciated that what God gives us is the best and what we need for our growth in life. We should obey God’s orchestrations and arrangements, cherish the opportunities God gives us, and play our roles ordained by God well, for this is the fundamental of living. Those who do their duties and conduct themselves honestly are smart people. Living like this is the best, and we will be released and happy with calm hearts.

If you have other understanding or new light about this article, you’re welcome to have a chat with us via the online chat window at the bottom of the website or send an email to [email protected]. We Look forward to sharing with more brothers and sisters about your enlightenment from God and growing together in Christ.

You may be interested in this article: I Finally Put Aside Jealousy Toward My Partner

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Find the Second Coming of Jesus Christ - Let’s discover the mystery of the Lord’s second coming, watch and prepare for it, then welcome the returned Lord Jesus Christ.

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