Only the clever Julia Cameron, author of the international best seller, The Artist’s Way, could turn a negative word like jealousy into a beacon of hope for creative people everywhere. We’re probably all too uncomfortably familiar with the creeping feelings of resentment, anger, disgust, and anxiety that jealousy brings along with it. I know I am. But Julia Cameron used those feelings to plot a very personal pathway.
Some people, like my husband, don’t need this sort of guidance (he always knew he wanted to be an actor), but I’m guessing there are more of us who do.
As soon as I started thinking about jealousy as plot points on a map, I was fascinated by where it led me.
I wrote a list (I love writing lists!).
This is who I was jealous of:
-people with a successful small business, entrepreneurs, screenplay writers, novelists, marathon runners, slim people, stylish people, fearless people, people who had invested in property, successful artists, good photographers, people who lived in a beautiful home, people who spoke more than one language, people who had lived in another country, people who traveled regularly, people with a great marriage, people who threw great parties, people who had good relationships with their kids, wealthy people, people who loved their work, people who gave back to the community, some bloggers (hello!).
When you make a list like this, it not only takes the heat out of a lot of the negativity you’ve been feeling but it gives you some pretty strong leads to follow if you’ve been wanting to make some changes in your life.
I began trying the things on my list, in no particular order. I tried to learn a second language (ok, that one didn’t work out so well), I started a line of hand-made greeting cards featuring my photographs that sold in stores across L.A., I said yes to any travel opportunities and ended up living in London for 6 months ( a great experience but my fledgling greeting card empire crumbled while I was away!). I began to write and yes, I started a blog!
Give it a try. Jealousy can be a pretty cool guide.