The 4 Differences Between Jealousy And Envy

Differences between jealousy and envy

Each and every one of us has dreams, objectives and desires which we would like to achieve, in addition to things, projects or affections that we would like to obtain or keep if we had with us.

These wishes often require a heavy investment of time and resources, and even then they are not always achieved. In this context, sometimes we see how other people do obtain things that we would like to achieve, or we fear that they will “take away” what we have achieved.

This can lead to awakening unpleasant and annoying emotions that, although natural, if not managed appropriately lead to toxic and destructive behaviors: we are talking about envy and jealousy. In both cases we are faced with unpleasant emotions related to the idea of ​​possession, being similar to each other or even frequently confused by a large part of the population. But we are not dealing with two synonyms, but rather with different concepts.

In order to learn to distinguish between them, throughout this article we are going to comment the main differences between jealousy and envywith explanations on how to distinguish between both phenomena.

Envy and jealousy: two different concepts

Understanding what the concepts envy and jealousy refer to is essential in order to be able to distinguish them and appreciate the differences between the two. In this sense, it is necessary to make a brief definition of each of them.

You may be interested:  The 8 Types of Grief and Their Characteristics

The feeling characterized by a strong sensation of envy is known as envy. discomfort or pain when faced with the existence or achievement by another person of an objective, characteristic or good that one wants for oneselfregardless of whether the other person has put in the effort to achieve it or not.

It is a strong desire to obtain something that another person has and we do not, causing us anger, bitterness and/or sadness that another person has our object of desire. Sometimes the feeling of admiration is considered as such as well as the desire to have something that one does not have, which would be “healthy envy”, but generally when there is envy there is a tendency to wish that the other would lose that good.

When it comes to jealousy, we refer by this name to the feeling of discomfort, anguish and concern directed towards the possibility of losing something that is valuable to us at the hands of another person and that we consider our own.

We can talk about the existence of jealousy towards very different types of elements, such as professional jealousy, but in the area in which it is most commonly observed in the area of ​​interpersonal relationships.

In this sense, the attention, affection or love of the other person is perceived as something that belongs to the subject, and that another can take away. Although the most common thing is that when we talk about jealousy we associate it with relationships, there can also be jealousy between friends or even between family members (for example siblings).

You may be interested:  How to Get Rid of the Negative Labels That Others Give Us

Although a certain level of jealousy may be natural, its existence generally speaks of insecurity in addition to a perception of possession or belonging of the other or of their attention, and it is not uncommon for there to be feelings of inferiority towards the person who has achieved the object of desire. .

Main differences between jealousy and envy

Although at first glance jealousy and envy have many similarities, the truth is that** they are concepts that present notable differences**. Among them, some of the most relevant are the following.

1. Situation regarding the object of desire

The main and most important difference between jealousy and envy, and the easiest way to distinguish them, is that while envy is established with respect to something that is desired but has never been had or possessed Jealousy focuses on the fear of losing something that you already have and want to keep.

2. Who is the emotion focused on?

A second difference lies in the object to which the emotion is directed. When you envy someone, the attention and discomfort is generated by the person who generates the envy. In jealousy, the discomfort does not usually come from the person (although the relationship usually suffers) but from a situation that triggers suspicion or fear of losing what is loved.

3. Possibility vs certainty

Among the differences between jealousy and envy we can find the level of uncertainty and certainty we have regarding what generates the emotion.

As a general rule, envy is based on a certainty: the other person has something that you lack. However, in the case of jealousy, the emotion is generated by uncertainty, by the fear that another person will appear and take the object of desire or the suspicion of losing what is dear.

You may be interested:  I Can't Control My Hunger: What Role Are My Senses Playing?

4. Fear vs rage

Another difference that we can find between jealousy and envy is found in the feeling that usually predominates. Generally, in jealousy, what usually predominates is an intense fear of losing what has been achieved, while envy focuses much more on resentment and anger that generates the other to have what we want and do not have. However, we must keep in mind that in both cases it is likely that there is both fear (of losing or not achieving what we want) and anger (towards the envied person or towards those who can achieve what we have).