Do you ever root against your friends?
I do, sometimes.
That friend with the nice house, beautiful wife, kids who are obviously angels.
The friend who travels to a new exotic location every week.
The guy you went to college with who’s a highly paid VP, or the other one that sold his startup.
Even the girl on your Facebook feed that claims she makes $10k a month in a “magic wrap” pyramid scheme.
I find myself rooting against many of them. And I don’t know why.
Their success, or lack thereof, has nothing to do with mine.
Hell, I’m successful. I’ve got a house that’s bigger than I need. Healthy kids, wife who loves me. Great job, money to spend on useless possessions. My life is a 10/10, without question.
So why does it matter what anyone else is doing with their life?
It doesn’t. Not one iota.
Why can’t I be grateful to see the people I know doing well? I hate it.
A huge, HUGE reason I got to be where I’m at is cheerleaders. People who cheered me on and were happy to see me succeed. People who weren’t even family.
Am I a cheerleader for anyone outside of my own family? I can count the number of people I actively root for on two hands.
To me, that’s pathetic.
I don’t have an answer for it at the moment. It’s something I’m working on.
To date, the best remedy I’ve found is sympathetic gratitude – basically faking it.
Remember when the older woman at church would say things like “Bless your heart!” or “Oh Dear I’m so sorry!” when something bad had happened?
That’s what I’m trying, except the opposite.
Them: “I make $10k each month selling wraps that magically make people thin!”
Me: “That’s kick ass! Great for you. So happy for you!”
It’s working. The more I say it, even inauthentically, the more natural it feels. And my brain has followed my mouth, to the point where I’m genuinely enthusiastic about what others are doing.
Call me a hippy, but I think there’s something to karma. You get what you give. Cheering on others only earns you more cheerleaders.