Recently I was having a conversation with an author friend about jealousy and she said something that really resonated with me. I’d been sharing with her the mixed emotions I feel when I read about new book deals. How I’m filled with happiness for the author one minute and then want to punch something in the next.
“I just want it to be my turn,” I said. “I’ve worked hard too!”
“What if envy was your friend?’ she asked. “Maybe even your superpower?”
It was a moment of pure clarity for me…the idea that I could funnel all of these negative emotions into something positive. All I needed to do was change the lens with which I viewed the emotions and instead of thinking “Why not me?” I could think, “Oh—that’s what I want too! Now I just have to go get it.”
I know, I know, easier said than done. But so much of the journey to publication is out of an author’s control and can be filled with a whole lot of negativity, so the very idea that my envy and jealousy could actually serve me as a positive? Now that’s something I’m more than willing to embrace.
This, like every other epiphany I have about myself and my emotions, will be a process. I don’t expect my jealousy to disappear overnight, but I am going to work hard at re-framing it in my mind. One day it will be my name on a deal announcement. One day it will be me getting to share exciting news. One day my next book will be in the hands of readers.
Because that’s what I want. Now I just have to go get it.