“Haters’ gonna hate, hate, hate” song lyrics pop into my mind when I think about jealousy. This song takes on jealousy and haters in a light hearted way; to simply shake it off. However, it’s not that easy to shake off haters and jealousy. We all have a tendency to take negative comments to heart, even when we don’t know the person well. Everyone deals with haters and jealous people. Even Mother Theresa had criticism and hatred directed at her. It doesn’t matter who you are or what positive influence you are trying to make it the world; haters will always exist. Nobody is exempt from jealousy and hatred from others, we are all subject to its cruelty during life.
It can hurt even more to have a friend who is jealous, because the actions and emotional expressions of a jealous person are not kind or loving. When it comes from a friend or loved one, we take it more personally. However, you need to understand that their jealousy is caused by their own underlying issues and it is not your fault.
Most jealousy is rooted in feelings of inadequacy
The person sees something in you or another person that makes them feel that they aren’t as good. It could be real or imagined, but the feelings of inadequacy are projected through negative thoughts or actions. Jealousy emerges as a reaction or solution to those feelings of inadequacy. For example, a woman may be jealous of her friend who makes more money, has a nice car, and designer clothing. Rather than being happy for her friend’s success this woman feels that her income, car, and clothing are inadequate by comparison. She may feel like a failure in life because her success is not even on the same scale as her friend and they graduated at the same time with the same degree.
Instead of dealing with these underlying feelings of inadequacy, the jealousy turns into little digs and insults when they are together. The jealous friend makes comments such as “it must be nice to get a new car every two years” and “wow, that purse must have cost enough to feed a small village for a month”. Those comments that are coming out of jealousy may make the jealous friend feel better momentarily, but they don’t address the underlying feelings of inadequacy and thus the jealousy will continue until the problem is addressed.
Even if the jealous friend begins making more money, or gets a better car and clothing, she will find a new friend to be jealous toward or something else with the existing friend to be jealous about, because the inadequacy is the driving force. Jealousy is a powerful force.
However, there are ways for a person to handle a jealous person that can help disarm a jealous person or prevent oneself from being exposed to jealous comments and actions. There is not a one size fits all solution to dealing with jealousy and hatred. Each situation is unique and needs to be handled accordingly. Below are some tips on how to deal with jealous and hateful people.
Delete, delete, delete
The era of social media has made it increasingly easy for people to hide behind their computer screen to hurl insults and jabs at people they know or even do not know. Much of these insults are coming from the person’s jealousy which is based on their own feelings of inadequacy or dissatisfaction with their own lives. They take to social media and they have a protected platform by which they can insult others.
There is power in the delete button. If someone is saying something negative about you on your personal page or forum then delete their comments. If their behavior persists, then unfriend or block the person. If you don’t have the ability to delete their comments, then block the person, so you don’t have to subject yourself to their comments. They will no longer be able to see you in the online forum, so they will have to turn their jealous comments and hatred toward someone else.
You don’t have to tolerate online bullies. Delete them, to prevent yourself to being further subject to someone else’s jealousy that is based on their own insecurities. This is especially helpful if the person is not related to you or is simply an acquaintance. If it is a person in your life that you feel you cannot block on social media then you need to talk to the person about the issue head on.
Take the Issue head on
There are times when you cannot delete or avoid the comments of a jealous individual. No matter how you try to disarm the person by changing the subject, it doesn’t stop them. In those situations, the best option is to talk with them about what is happening.
Do not approach them at a time when you are angry, such as when an altercation or bout of jealousy has just occurred. Talk to them when you can be completely calm, rational, and you know what you want to say. Have your comments ready before you approach the person, so you know your talking points and have thought about their possible reactions. Talk to them in a way that you would want to be talked to, using kindness and empathy.
For example, if your co-worker is always calling out your mistakes in front of your boss, then approaching your colleague by saying “why the heck are you throwing me under the bus in front of the boss all the time?” may not cause a nice reaction. Approaching the person in such an abrupt and rude way is likely to cause a defensive reaction that will be equally if not more unkind. Instead, chose a kinder approach and you are more likely to get a response that seeks to understand where you are coming from and they are also more likely to recognize how you are feeling. Such a statement you could use in this example would be “I feel bad when you tell the boss things that I do wrong and it is affecting our working relationship, which I want to be a positive relationship”.
Taking on the issue of jealousy head on is especially important when it comes to family and close relationships. You want to improve those relationships, so let the person know that you are coming to them for that reason.
Remind yourself that it’s them and not you
Take a step back and pause when you are getting treated unfairly because of someone’s jealousy. Remind yourself that it is not you that has the problem, it is them. Their jealousy and underlying issues are causing them to act this way. Try not to take it personally. It is easier said than done. However, if you do pause and take the time to analyze why they may be acting jealous, you can begin to understand what may be motivating their behaviors, which then makes it easier to digest the circumstance.
For example, if you have a family member who is jealous of your family vacations and makes rude comments about how much money you spend on your vacations you can reflect on her life situation. Her husband is out of work and they are unable to take vacations for the time being. She has jealousy that is actually based in her own sadness that she can’t take vacations like you are right now. Recognizing that her feelings of jealousy are actually rooted in sadness and not any actual hatred toward you can make you empathize with her life situation. Your reaction can thus be more empathetic.
Perhaps you realize you shouldn’t talk about your vacations in front of her since it is a trigger point for her at this time. Life changes, and someday they may be taking vacations again soon. When she comes to tell you about her vacation then be the bigger person by listening, giving her positive responses while she talks, and restrain from telling about your latest vacation unless she asks you about it.
Being the bigger person is never easier, but with practice it does come more naturally. What you will discover over time is that people will naturally be more drawn to you when you are interested in talking about them and not yourself. Their jealousy will subside because the focus has been turned toward the positive that is happening in their life and not lack thereof because they are comparing themselves to you.
Being the bigger person is especially important with family and close relationships. If you want your relationships to thrive, then show them that you love and care for them by talking about the positive in their life and avoiding anything about your life that may trigger their jealousy. The less you can talk about yourself, unless asked, the better, especially when it comes to someone who has jealousy issues with you.
Disarm them with positivity
Knowing that a person’s jealousy is rooted in their own insecurities, self doubt, and feelings of inadequacy can help you be more understanding and change your reaction when someone acts out in jealousy toward you. If a friend makes jealous comments toward you because of how perfect your home always looks then disarm them with a positive comment. For example, you could say “your garden is much prettier than mine, you certainly have a green thumb that I don’t have, its nice that we all have different strengths and abilities”.
Providing them with a compliment and also acknowledging that differences exist and that is normal and fine will help ease their own insecurities. You can’t compliment someone into happiness, but you can help disarm their negative comments that are rooted in jealousy if you provide them with positive feedback.
It is not always easy to compliment someone, especially if it is someone that your are not close to or you do not find them very likeable. However, it is empowering to them and to you when you practice positivity. It makes them feel better by helping them recognize the positive in themselves. It will also make you feel good when you help make someone’s day and life a little brighter.
Words carry power. Being a positive influence in the world, especially when it comes to a person who feels like they are less than you, is a powerful force. Help others to be better and do better by focusing on the positive, especially when negative comments are coming your way. If you are able to practice this method of disarming a jealous person it will become easier and more consistent over time. You will find that they will in time return the favor with compliments toward you and others. Showing love and using positive words to encourage can be infectious, so spread it among many and your community and world will become a better place.
Ignore and avoid
There is a slim percentage of this world that simply does not change no matter what tactic you use to disarm or disengage their jealous behaviors. These haters will hate you because you are too perfect, then they will hate on you the next day because of your faults.
You can never do right by some people. These people, once you recognize who they are, should be limited or cut out of your life. You don’t need someone who is continually trying to tear you down in life. Their own insecurities may be so deeply rooted that only professional help will help change their ways. Their behavior, if it is impeding on your life, and your attempts to make them stop have not worked allow you to cut ties with the individual with more peace of mind.
There is no rule in life that says you have to be friends with every person you know or encounter. There are some mean people in this world who will always be dissatisfied by their own life and thus insult and hate on others constantly. Don’t get sucked into their drama and insults. Avoid them, change jobs if the situation is severe enough that it affecting your mental well being and attitude in life. Don’t allow this type of person to be disruptive to your life. You have control over your life and who you spend time with. Anyone who is continually hurling insults at you out of jealousy is not deserving of your time and energy. If it is a family member, you can limit your time and exposure to the person. If you feel like you need to be around them in order to spend time with the whole family, then avoid direct interactions or make contact as brief as possible. If do interact, remind yourself again that their comments are based on their own unhappiness in life and have nothing to do with you.
You cannot control the way they act, but you can control how you react to this person. Chose the higher ground, which is not reacting to their negativity. Although it will still not be pleasant, not giving them the satisfaction of seeing you upset can help you get over the situation more quickly and move on to more pleasant people and conversations. Don’t allow yourself to get cornered by a person you know is jealous of you, because the outcome will not be good. If you need to simply cut off the conversation and go somewhere else in order to avoid their comments, then do so, because you don’t need to allow yourself to be subject to anyone’s abuse.
Limit your exposure to such a person or cut them out entirely, because you are worthy of loving relationship. There are many people in this world. You don’t need to stick with friends or relationships that are salted with insults based out of jealousy. Life is too short and there are plenty of people in this world who do need a good friend or relationship. Eventually people who act this way out of jealousy will change if and when they realize nobody wants to be around their negativity.
Keep being you
Sometimes having haters is a sign that you are doing things right in life and are successful. People who are jealous of you know that you are doing well and they want that for themselves. Rather than investing their time in making their own lives, better they try to bring others down. Their insults, criticism, and hate are directed at those who they know are better than them, so they try to look for faults in those people so they can think they are better in one way or another. Their jealousy is rooted in their own failures and inadequacies in life.
Don’t allow these people to bring you down. Keep being you and keep being successful. Don’t allow someone else’s own failures to bring you down or prevent you from pursing your dreams. Often having people that dislike you in life is a sign that you are doing a lot right which is exactly why people don’t like you. You will never have favor with everyone you encounter. People will dislike you, especially when you remind them of their own shortfalls or failings. That’s part of the deal in being successful. The more successful you become the more you will find people will become jealous and thus negative commentary will be coming your way.
Do all you can to avoid, disengage, disarm, ignore, or cut these haters out of your life. However, it is not completely unavoidable, so when it does happen don’t allow the haters to stop you for what you are doing in life. Keep being you and remind yourself that their comments are based on their own failures and dissatisfaction with life and have nothing to do with you personally.
Focus on relationships that encourage
You can not make all people happy. There will always be people who will be jealous or hateful to you. It doesn’t matter who you are, everyone has haters. Rather than focusing on changing these people to like you, focus your time and energy on those relationships that are encouraging.
There are plenty of people in this world who are good, positive, and loving. They show love to others in their relationships because they treat others how they also want to be treated. Invest your time and energy with these type of people because they are of high value in your life.
The haters should be kept at arms length or further if possible. Don’t allow the negativity from hateful, jealous people to have power over your life. Chose to be close to people who encourage and support you and your life endeavors. Be of encouragement to those you love too. You will see that the encouragement and love become increasingly symbiotic which can be empowering for everyone involved.
You determine who you allow to influence your life. If you spend a great deal of time with someone who exhibits jealousy toward you, then you will not feel uplifted or encouraged. Seek out the relationships in your life that uplift you, encourage you, and help you become a positive influence in the world.
Relationships are powerful, so make sure yours are rooted in positivity, encouragement, and love. Forget the haters and deal with them only when needed.