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Photo: Alex Zotov (Shutterstock) Jealousy and envy are two of the most common—yet negative and useless—emotions many of us have. For a long time, I let both of these destructive feelings overwhelm and poison me. Here’s how I finally gained control over them. Jealousy and envy: A case study It’s hard for me to admit these flaws (especially to thousands of strangers), but I’ve been learning that it takes a good hard look at your shortcomings to truly get past them. Maybe it’s because I had “ middle child syndrome ” or maybe it’s the competitive streak that I’m usually hiding, but jealousy—the feeling that someone is trying to take something you have—and envy—feeling resentful because someone has something you don’t—have both always come naturally to me. My earliest memory of these ugly emotions is from one Christmas when I was about nine years old. My younger brother gave my older sister one of his treasured Transformers toys as a gift. (I believe it was Ratchet, the ambulance with its red crosses on the sides and gun station when it transformed into a robot.) All I got from him was a measly card—and I threw a fit. It was a full-on fit. I threw the toy at the wall, ripped the card, stomped up the stairs, and wailed into my pillow as loudly as I could. (I told you they’re ugly emotions.) In later years, similar feelings would wash over me when a boyfriend would spend more time talking […]