How to Enjoy (& Not Envy) Our Coworkers’ Success

With St. Patrick’s Day recently behind us, we all probably saw a lot of green being worn around the office. One kind of green we don’t want to see around the workplace is envy, which is insidious and harmful to everyone around us. Sometimes it’s hard to appreciate the success of our coworkers and not feel a little bit of jealousy. But envy is detrimental to our work life; it can harm our relationships, team performance, and most importantly, ourselves. Here are a few strategies we can use to put envy behind us and truly enjoy the accomplishments of our co-workers. 

Don't Fall into the Comparison Trap!

A lot of people in the workforce are competitive, but constantly stacking ourselves up against coworkers isn’t good for our mental health. A little friendly competition is fine, but it becomes a problem when we start to lose gratitude and develop negative feelings towards others. One problem with comparing ourselves to others is that we often only compare ourselves to people whom we perceive to be “above” us. This can only set us up to feel unhappy or that we are not as good as someone else. The only comparison we should be making is that of our present self versus our past self – that way we can see more of our own value and how much we have grown over time.

Affirm Yourself!

If someone gets a promotion or closes that big deal, our natural reaction might be, “It should have been me!” Instead of coming up with reasons why someone shouldn’t have had something positive happen to them, we should look for key takeaways that could benefit our own performance. Maybe we could come in earlier, ask more questions, volunteer for more responsibilities, etc. We are capable of whatever we set our minds to! Try to replace those feelings of discouragement with positive affirmations to yourself, and believe you can achieve whatever it is that you want.

The Team Philosophy

At the end of the day, we need to remember that everyone is a part of one collective unit. Much like a sports team, we should all be working to help our organization move forward, and celebrate when something positive happens to one of our teammates. Great players can only carry a team so far – we all need to look for opportunities to help the team in whatever way we can. To truly help everyone, and most importantly ourselves, we need to replace jealousy with feelings of appreciation and gratitude, so we can all enjoy the celebration.