You: I’m engaged to get married!!! (runs around sprinkling white and pearl and pink glitter, pleased and happy)
Friend: That’s wonderful! I’m happy for you, but I am jealous.
You: (some joy gone)
Envy is the religion of the mediocre. It comforts them, it soothes their worries, and finally it rots their souls, allowing them to justify their meanness and their greed until they believe these to be virtues. —Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Angel’s Game
Folks, this happens. We all have someone in our past, present or future to whom you cannot impart good news without them poking a hole in your glittery balloon. It is human nature to want to share good news, but unfortunately, it is also human nature to be envious of another. I call this “keeping up with the Joneses” syndrome. “Why do they XYZ and I don’t?”
We all had it at one time or another and boy, can it drag you down. The key to defeating it is to not refuse to wallow in it. Why? Because your envy will translate to negativity and that negativity will hold you back .
As a former teacher, I saw this a lot, especially among the female teachers. If one teacher’s class scored high on the state test or had a lot of students on the honor roll, it was rarely, “Oh wow, she must be a good teacher. She does work hard.” No and nope. It was almost always “She has an easy class. She made up the grades. She must have cheated.”
Sad, right? They never see that teacher staying until 4 pm working with the students, or creating games and other enrichment activities, or seeking out extra resources. Nope. They just assumed the worse and their jealously eats them from the inside out. Do they try to improve their teaching techniques or seek out new resources? No. Because they assumed that this “star” teacher cheated, they see no recourse for themselves.
I see it a lot from authors. “Why did such a badly written book make it to the best seller list while my well-written book didn’t?”
Let me tell you the answer: because people liked it and it caught their attention.
Does it mean that your book stinks? Maybe. It also may mean that it doesn’t suit the general population. Or no one has discovered it yet. Or people aren’t ready for it yet.
Point is, stop beating yourself up about what other books are doing. Stop checking Amazon and Novel Rank and all those stat places and beating yourself up about your numbers and how those other books are such terrible trash.
Let me let you in on another secret. I despise reality TV. The Real Housewives of whatever, Bad Girls Club, Survivor…anyone who still thinks those shows are true reality needs to take a sanity test. There is a guiding hand behind all this ramped up dramatics and fighting and “cussing out”.
But…. many people seem to enjoy it. They talk about who whomped whose ass, who pulled out whose hair and the reunion show where so and so fought so and so again.
Yeah, no thanks.
Does that make them terrible shows? Maybe. And maybe, right now, that’s what people like. It’s strange, I don’t understand it, but hey, that’s me.
Same with your book. Never mind with what other books are doing. You be sure that you wrote the book you wanted to read. That’s all that matters.
Create a space of positivity in your mind and your heart and shine on with blessings those who do well. I promise, it will keep you free and easy.