I’m generally a healthy person, so it came as a complete shock when I was recently diagnosed with this disease. I was stunned even further to learn that almost all people experience symptoms throughout their lifetime and that there is no cure.
The disease is WANTYITIS.
Please see below to determine if this disease may affect you or someone you know.
Signs and Symptoms:
If left untreated, this disease can lead to feelings of sadness, jealousy, and inadequacy. Symptoms often appear in early childhood and if ignored will continue throughout the person’s entire lifetime.
- Always needing the latest and greatest gadget or toy;
- Feeling green with envy upon seeing your friend’s new stuff;
- Buying things that you don’t need just because;
- Judging or looking down on people with less than you;
- Not sharing your gifts and treasure with those in need;
- Demanding things NOW;
- Throwing temper tantrums when you do not get your way;
- Being friends with people only to access their “stuff”;
- Always wanting more, more more; now now now….;
- In extreme cases, this disease has also been linked to anxiety, depression, vandalism and theft.
While not hereditary, this disease can be passed from parents to children easily typically through modeled behavior. Children catch this disease especially when they are given everything they want or if they are not taught how to share with others. In adults, this disease is caused by greed, jealousy, failing to focus on what really matters in life, and coveting your neighbor’s things.
While there is no cure for this disease, one treatment has proven effective. The treatment is as follows: Be happy with what you have. Be thankful for what you have. Be generous with what you have. Daily adherence to treatment allows the heart and mind to heal, leading to resolution of all symptoms in most cases. Failure to comply with treatments will cause relapse.
WANTYITIS is the “disease” of wanting more more more! It is the “disease” of being happy and content with life one moment and then unhappy a moment later after comparing your life to someone else’s. It is the “disease” of jealousy. It is the “disease” having and not sharing.
I once heard a homily where the priest asked two children to come to the front of church to help him demonstrate a point. He gave both children a bowl. In the first child’s bowl he placed 10 pieces of candy and then asked the child, “Are you happy?” The child beamed at the candy and answered, “Yes!” Then in the second child’s bowl he counted out 20 pieces of candy and asked the child, “Are you happy?” The child was delighted and answered, “Yes!” The priest looked at both children and said, “Great! You are both happy!” Child one looked at the priest with a frown. The priest asked him what was wrong. “He’s got more candy than me,” said child one pointing at child’s two bowl. “But you were happy just a minute ago,” concluded the priest.
I’m blessed to not have a “real” disease, but I do have a mild case of WANTYITIS. I have it under control with treatment, but I do experience flare up’s occasionally. For example, every time I go to Target for a few items and leave with over $100 worth of stuff…that’s a flare-up! I had a flare-up the other day in Hobby Lobby when I almost convinced myself I needed a 3 foot tall colorful metal frog statue just because it was 60% off (what?).
We have a lot. But we sometimes forget how hugely blessed we are, because we spend more time comparing, wanting, demanding, and being jealous.
Please join me in treating our WANTYITIS:
I’m happy with what I have.
I’m thankful for what I have.
I’m generous with what I have.