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JEALOUSY AMONGST ARTISTS

It’s such an insidious and evil thing.

He got a show at the top gallery and you didn’t.  She sold two paintings last week and you haven’t sold one painting all year. 

A rich collector is financing the project of your artist friend who graduated from art school last year and here you are, still struggling after 15 years to make it as an artist with that day job you absolutely hate that barely pays enough for you to make rent, let alone afford art materials.

What in the hell is going on?

It can’t be dumb luck, can it?  You’re a super-talented artist.  Everyone says so.  Why can’t you JUST get into a gallery?  He did … and he’s not nearly as gifted and doesn’t work nearly as hard as YOU do.

She’s been living off a trust fund and is coked up half the time and excuse me … SHE’S in talks for a one-woman show?

“What the fuck!” You say to yourself.  How is THIS happening?

It’s called “jealousy” dude … or dudette.  And you are totally consumed.

Dictionary.com defines jealousy as … “resentment against a rival, a person enjoying success or advantage, etc., or against another's success or advantage itself.”

Jealousy has a stench that is so strong that I can smell it when an artist writes to me and tells me what’s going on with their artist friends and not them.

It’s rancid.

Do you know when I can especially detect jealousy?  Usually when I hear – as I often do – artists absolutely RIP Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst for being “sell outs” or “not real artists” or “having other artists do their work for them.”

Whatever you think about their work is beside the point.  There’s no denying that they’re playing the game and they APPEAR to be winning.

Here’s what I find so interesting about jealous people.  It’s SO obvious that they’re jealous and yet they refuse to admit their jealousy which makes them look even worse.  Few people ever admit to jealousy.  Not a good look.

Look … we’re all human.  We’re all subject to the same emotions and conclusions sometimes in life.  Yet here’s what I’ve learned...

YOU’VE GOTTA STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHER PEOPLE.

When you compare yourself to others, it’s a no-win proposition for you.  Even if jealousy spurs you into action on your own behalf, it’s still a negative motivation.  Trust me.  As a creative person, you don’t want any negativity in your life.  It’s too much work that sucks the lifeblood out of you.

Emotions like jealousy cloud your vision, stifle your creativity and raise your blood pressure.  You just don’t need that stuff.

I rarely feel jealous of other people, but when I do, I always remind myself that we still live in a massively huge universe.  The universe is full of unique possibilities for each of us.  We live amid infinity. 

Forget about whatever “he” got … don’t focus on what “she” has.  Focus on yourself.  Concentrate on God’s creation of this vast universe.  Focus on what’s in store for you.

Infinity is speaking to YOU.  You cannot hear it if you’re busy being resentful about what someone else GOT.

I once heard a minister say that you shouldn’t be jealous of anyone because of what they’ve got - because you simply don’t know HOW they got it.  I’d like to add to that - you also don’t know WHAT they’re doing to KEEP it.

As they say, the grass is always greener on the other side.  Truth is, people who may seem to have it all, actually have a LOT less than you think.

Also, have you ever dealt with someone who you know is jealous of you?  You say to yourself, “Really?”  “You’re jealous of THIS?  Trust me, THIS is NOT what you think it is!” 

Don’t give in to jealousy.  It’s not a good look.  It diminishes you and ruins your day.  There have been times when I’ve had twinges of jealousy.  When I do, I either quickly turn my attention away from that person and move on OR I really examine their situation and usually realize that it’s ultimately not the best thing in the world anyway.  In short, rationalization works. 

Ultimately, isn’t life tough enough?  Just … LET IT GO.

As they say, “Don’t hate, congratulate!”  Good energy comes back to you … in its own time anyway.  Stop focusing on THEM.  Do YOU.

Believe me, I’m saying this to you, but I’m really saying it to myself.  In fact, let’s SHOUT it out together …

“Don’t hate, congratulate!” 

“Don’t hate, congratulate!”

“Don’t hate, congratulate!”

“Don’t hate, congratulate!”

UGH.

 

 

Jealousy by Stevie V

Why Artists Should Talk    



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