How to Curb Being Jealous Of Other Business Owners
You Are Not “Behind”
First of all, I believe that (with intention) being in business can be more fun than fuss, more flow than force, and more satisfaction than sacrifice. Secondly, I also believe in the cliché that “comparison is the thief of joy.”
But not letting yourself succumb to jealousy is easier said than done.
Even the most seasoned entrepreneurs struggle with comparison. There will always be someone ‘ahead’ of you who is more established and better resourced while there will also always be someone younger and more enthusiastic coming up behind you, who just seems to be doing it easier. Check out this great piece by Medium about The Cost Of Envy. One of my many key takeaways is “Envious people are blind to their own strengths, and they’re unable to see the weaknesses of rivals.” – Leon Ho from Lifehack.
What To Do To Curb Being Jealous Of Other Business Owners
While I’m all for observing your competitors and colleagues, I find it better to approach this as though they are my mentors or my coaches vs someone who is ‘doing it better’ than me. Before my negative self-judgements morph into jealousy and envy, I try to focus on the facts and extract inspiration and ideas from what it is they are doing and achieving.
For example, when it comes to looking at your competitors’ websites and marketing, it can be quite easy to get overwhelmed thinking how much they must be spending and how on earth will you ever “catch up” or compete with them. Instead, try focusing on the bits you can emulate, being realistic about the budget and resources you have right now. This is why we like to draw from other websites for inspiration but never comparison – and why we also encourage our clients to take a staged approach. It’s amazing how quickly a website can grow and evolve in as little as 12 months when slowly improved upon little by little.
And, I recognise that being jealous of other business owners doesn’t just stop at pining over their website and marketing. It extends far beyond – to other areas of their business including staff, structure, clients and so on. So, here’s some extra info from Psychologist Noosha Anzab from LYSN (an Australia wide online counseling platform).
8 Key Recommendations To Help Stop Being Jealous
“Jealousy typically refers to something we already possess or want being threatened by a third person (in this case, another business owner)” says Noosha. “It’s a complex emotion that can be linked to a low self-esteem or feelings of insecurity but it is also a natural, instinctive emotion that can affect all of us at some point in our lives. It can be a strange emotion too, because most of the time those feelings are unintentional. That green-eyed monster can creep in subconsciously before we even get a chance to recognise what it is that we’re feeling.” – Noosha Anzab
Noosha has developed 8 key recommendations to help stop being jealous of others that I thought could prove useful whenever you are in the throes of a jealousy spiral.
- TAKE A PATH OF ACCEPTANCE | Humans are inherently competitive. We will all feel jealous at some point in our lives and it’s okay to recognise and accept when it happens.
- CONSIDER WHY YOU MIGHT BE FEELING JEALOUS | Oftentimes jealousy stems back to some of our own issues with feeling inadequate, inferior or insecure. It can bring out our own feelings of mediocrity or cause us to feel resentment towards another person. Ask yourself what it is about this other business that’s making you feel jealous, and then see if it could be linked back to the way you feel about yourself.
- SHOW SOME LOVE TO YOURSELF | It is natural to feel jealous however focusing on what you find good in yourself can help curb those ‘green’ feelings. Security in who you are and what you offer can aid in building healthy foundations for all your relationships, helping to prevent jealousy and doubt.
- SHOW SOME LOVE | When jealousy kicks in, try nurturing some other emotions like gratitude. Consciously swallow your ego and genuinely acknowledge/commend them for what it is you’re envious of. This can be an appreciation email or a social media 👍.
- ASK FOR AN OUTSIDER’S PERSPECTIVE | Sometimes our jealous feelings can be irrational, especially if linked to our own self-esteem issues. Consider talking to someone about how you’re feeling and why you might be feeling jealous. Avoid trying to gossip or vent. You’re simply seeking an outside, rational perspective to help you see things a little more clearly.
- DON’T ACT ON YOUR FEELINGS | Being jealous of someone is not worth acting in a way that may cause harm, or that you’ll later regret. After all, you don’t always know the entire reality of a situation. For example, just because someone drives a nice car or their business has many staff/personnel, doesn’t mean they are super successful or they’ve got it all figured out – they could just be up to their eyeballs in debt or have no free time! What you perceive is often not what’s actually going on.
I’m a fan of this perspective… “There’s just no reason for me to envy what others have because those things don’t align with my vision for this company.” – Leon Ho from Lifehack.
- CONTROL YOUR RESPONSE | Studies have shown that envy and physical pain actually use the same area of the brain, so it can physically hurt to feel jealous! Recognise when it’s happening and adopt some tactics to turn your thought processes around.
- BE ENVIOUS, NOT JEALOUS | Being envious vs being jealous can be considered the lesser of two evils. Envy is typically a reaction to lacking something however it doesn’t necessarily mean that you would wish a person ill will. Envy can be beneficial – it can motivate and drive a person to want to succeed and do better. Jealousy or resentment on the other hand can have a negative impact on relationships and could also lead to harmful and destructive behaviours.
For the full list breakdown, check out this article How to stop being jealous of another business owner.
Ready To Push Jealousy Aside And Be The Best Business Owner You Can Be?
Woo hoo! It just so happens we can assist in two ways!
- Web Design + Marketing | We’ve been at this for a while now and now how to guide our clients along their website journey, whatever that looks like. From starting small and growing their website over time through to taking bigger leaps and integrating social media and email marketing, custom website features and more.
- Business Coaching, Programs + Networking | Throughout the year, over on www.karenahl.com.au I personally offer 1:1 and group coaching programs as well as networking events aimed at helping business owners become profitable and feel rewarded.