Envy is a real emotion. We’ve all been there, we’ve all experienced it and we’ve all been fooled by it. Wondering what Midlife Envy Is? It’s when you see someone else’s life, especially on social media, realize you’re close in age, but they seem to have it all figured out, and you still feel like you don’t. To you, she’s the bee’s knees, but somehow, instead of feeling uplifted when you see her or her posts, you’re left looking at your own life with disdain.
First, it’s okay to feel how you feel. Seriously, you shouldn’t be ashamed. Feelings are normal, human experiences so I’m not going to ask you to ignore or push them aside. Actually, quite the opposite.
When we can get curious about our envy, we are on our way to making positive changes.
Here are three steps to get rid of the midlife envy and get back on track to leading your own best (mid)life.
Identify what you are envious of.
Ask yourself what this person has that you wish you did. For this article, let’s call the object of your envy “Sally-Sue.” Does Sally-Sue have a thriving marriage and grown kids who never struggle with adulting? Is she is traveling and seeing the world or spending her time with her creative hobby or a fulfilling career? Does she look fit and athletic with a figure that defies age? What specifically is it that’s triggering you? Really look at it from all angles. Journal your answers with some free-writing, letting everything spill onto the page. What you notice is helpful and what you openly admit holds many answers.
Identify what you can do to begin bringing the aspect you envy into your life.
Once you identify that which brings out your green-eyed monster, look truthfully at what it takes to achieve this. If Sally-Sue has a creative hobby and you’re jealous of her work, how often does she dedicate time to her craft? If her thriving marriage is something you wish you had, how does she speak of and to her husband? Do they surround themselves with like-minded couples? If it’s her figure, how does she eat? How often does she exercise? Is she polishing off the chocolate cake when no one is looking or is a couple of bites enough? I mean this with humor but also with honesty – my guess is having all that you want takes work and time and effort. What good habits does Sally-Sue have that you could adopt? Once you determine these, begin living “as if” this was your reality as well.
Begin a gratitude journal.
Looking at some else’s life with envy is understandable, but often we need reminders of our own life. Each night for 10 days, write down 10 things you are grateful for. This can seem challenging at first, but in time, you will be on the lookout for the good in your life that’s going unnoticed.
I know all of this sounds easier said than done.
Change requires accountability and uncovering what is holding us back.
It’s not just about reciting a fancy mantra, wishing on a star, and “poof!” your perfect life or appears. But really seeing what you want and taking steps toward it is the only way to make it happen.
Can’t seem to go it alone? You aren’t alone and it’s okay to seek help! Working toward specific goals is exactly what a coach can help you with. I’m currently offering a complimentary 90-minute Hello Session while I’m the midst of rebranding. Grab a session today and let’s talk about this green-eyed monster and ways we can move you forward in getting over midlife envy. Just click here to be taken to my online scheduler.
P.S. A final word on false images. Many times we look at the Sally-Sues of the world and are only seeing what they want us to see. In this digital age of social media, it’s more true than ever. You are seeing snips of a reality. Their life most likely isn’t as perfect as it seems. Sally-Sue may be looking at you with her own envy and she may also need someone she can be real with. Why not be that person? Reach out to her and ask how she’s doing. Ask and really listen. We all need more kindness and more connection in a world that seems so focused on what divides us instead of what draws us together.