Career Envy: “I Wish I Had Her Job”
What it might look like: Last time you saw your college roommate, she had just been sent to London and Paris for a work project, and flew business class. Her assistant fielded her phone calls while she took a few days to see the sights afterward, but she had to get back to attend a benefit dinner hosted by Bono on behalf of her boss. How do you get that job?
What to remind yourself: Basically, that you’re only looking at the exterior of said friend’s life. “You don’t know everything about a person’s career,” Lasky reminds us. “Maybe she has a difficult boss, works 12-hour days or hates her job and can’t wait to get out of it.” After all, no one is going to flaunt their five-month stretch working every weekend.
And even if things are as good as they seem, your envy isn’t about her—it’s about you. “Instead of focusing on another person’s job, reflect on your own career and take a moment to appreciate the things that you like about your job,” says Krakower.
Try to figure out what, exactly, underlies your envy, because jealousy can help you pinpoint opportunities: Is it that you really want to travel more? Work in a profession with more cachet? Or just progress in your chosen career? Once you identify your triggers, rather than eat your heart out, use them as motivation to set new goals.