Envy can argumentatively be one of the most powerful emotions to experience. Frequently, envy and jealousy are intertwined to have almost identical meanings. However, these emotions are very distinctive in nature. Envy is more of a fear-based insecurity that another individual possesses a skill or/and accomplishment that the envier wants or wishes the individual had less of.
Individuals experience jealousy when their "green-eyed monster" takes over, making them fear that something will be taken from them or they lack specific characteristics. Emotions are often associated with a color; green has represented envy and jealousy since the Renaissance period. Shakespeare transformed this idea into a more visual component in Othello and used the term to describe Iago's deceitful success in instilling jealousy within Othello's heart. Jealousy’s strong impact can lead even the closest to you towards betrayal.
What results from these feelings of envy is a nagging desire to hide the emotions in the first place. Friends and enemies alike will target others as a scapegoat for their own feelings. These scapegoat methods can be discrediting one's success, seeking to make that person they envy feel guilt for their success, and begin acting based on that insecurity of feeling as if they aren't good enough. The list goes on about how envious individuals mask and cope with these powerful emotions.
Speaking from experience, when I was in high school, I used to become envious of other people my age who seemed to have reached higher levels of success than me. As I grew older, now in college, I kept focusing on my goals and achievements, and I learned not to fall into the hands of the "green-eyed monster." I learned to remind myself of my worth first; not to compare myself to others because each person has their own story and timeline. I also remind myself that often I compare myself to people in a different industry than the one I work in. It is senseless to compare my politically focused progress to a musician's timeline.
If we are both in the same field, I utilize the mindset of surrounding myself with more successful people so their skills and traits can rub onto me. That positive mindset enables me to view more successful people my age as a gateway to improving specific weak attributes that I possess and learning from them. Most people, especially young minds trying to find themselves, can be expected not to abide by and adopt this mindset. Instead, the envier allows this temporary feeling to burn bridges and lose those that could have helped them grow.
As the subject of someone's envy in a shared workspace, I couldn't have anticipated myself being envied. I try my best to help people achieve similar success. According to research, there are signs that a friend or colleague may view you as competition. For a fair amount of time, I was in denial that the other person felt some envy toward me, let alone viewed my presence as competition. However, with the person's actions aligning with each bullet point given in various articles, and sharing our interactions with my therapist, it became evident that their actions were red flags.
Some genuinely want to see you grow and give feedback to help do so. These are the ones you want in your corner. Others will leave you with backhanded compliments and disregard for your work. You can decide who you want in your circle.