I don't think I'm supposed to say this, but when something happens to someone I know, something great and wonderful and exciting, that it is something that I have been wishing for, or I have deluded myself into thinking I can achieve, normal, sane people are genuinely happy for them. I'm mostly jealous. And resentful. And in my head I think of every reason that I deserve to have or achieve what they have more than them. Just on the surface, I know deep, deep down I am truly happy for them. But it's like pretty deep. I'm doing some digging.
The thing I think I realized while pondering this today, is that I don't think I am truly resentful about their success, I think what I am resentful about is that I haven't achieved it myself. I'm angry with myself that I didn't do it first, or better, or stronger, or at all. And then I silently take it out on them, cursing their name and deciding in my head that they have found some sort of secret loop hole I was not privy to, or that they have unprecidented luck. Once in a while the line "who did they blow to get that?" creeps into my mind. Obviously this is much easier than facing the fact that I have failed myself. It's pretty pathetic. The tried and tested "make someone else feel like shit to make yourself feel better" route. Though I'm not actually making them feel like shit to their faces, only in my head. Still, it's sad.
I don't think I'm the only person that does this, I think it's pretty common. I hope it's common because I am going out on a limb here and exposing some truly terrible thoughts. But of course, no one is going to parade around the fact that they think someone's else's achievement is a sham and that they probably deserved it more. In fact, we probably didn't. Which is why they achieved it, and we didn't. We're not mad at the person for being successful, we're mad at ourselves because we know we're capable of that kind of success, but we haven't gotten there yet. Happens to me all the time. And then I end up feeling awful about myself.
When did I start being so hard on myself? When did I become so focused on resenting other people's success that I forgot to work towards my own? Just when I think I have done something great, I see someone else do something ten times better. Why does that matter to me? Why do I peg myself against everyone else? I'm sure it doesn't matter to anyone else what kind of success I'm having, so it should only matter to me. So if it only matters to me, why am I so obssessed with "beating" everyone else?
Life is not a contest. Life is not a contest. Life is not a contest. I need to keep telling myself this. Or buy a giant blackboard and chalk and do some Bart Simpson-ing. If anyone else told me what I just wrote myself I would tell them to shut up. Or that they are nuts and need to chill out and relax or get some xanax. Or a kitten. It's so easy to talk the talk about living one day at a time and not comparing yourself to other people and blah blah blah. When it comes time to walk the walk, I am crawling. Actually, I'm lying on the sidewalk begging passers-by to drag me by my heels behind them. This week I am going to reflect on this and find a brilliant way to stop this self destructive behavior.
Don't beat me to the punch though, cause if you do I won't be happy for you.
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