Jealousy…what is it? Why does it exist? Why is it easily displayed by some and seldom revealed by others? What makes such a useless emotion with the obvious intent to destroy the foundation of unity and peace—an emotion that is displayed essentially to demean and dismiss the achievements of others? Do such feelings of jealousy and envy really need to occupy space in our emotional existence?
Jealousy is defined as an emotion, typically referring to negative thoughts and feelings of insecurity, fear, and anxiety. Definitions further assert, jealousy is often a combination of presenting emotions such as anger, resentment, inadequacy, helplessness and disgust. Furthermore it has been mentioned that jealousy encompasses resentment against a rival, a person enjoying success or advantage, etc., or against another’s success or advantage itself.
Sure there are some people who are boastful, those who announce their successes as a means to inflate their egos and intentionally deflate the egos of others. On the other hand, many people share cheerful news as a testimony of thankfulness and a means to inspire and motivate others on their personal journeys in life.
Human interaction dictates many everyday situations where we have the power to invoke a variety of emotional responses. For example, a co-worker is granted a promotion. For some the first reaction without thought may be feelings of bitterness, resentment and even anger. The reality is judgmental feelings such as this is often rooted in personal insecurities or feelings of incompetence. In many instances, jealousy rears its ugly head instinctively as a defense mechanism designed to shield from perceived deficiencies.
Internal questioning when faced with the accomplishments of others is acceptable as long as such self reflection does not take the form of negative counterattacks, gossiping and offensive character condemnation designed to deflate the credibility of other people. It’s perfectly okay to ponder the achievements of others if it propels necessary steps toward personal development. However if emotions sway toward negative thoughts and actions, it is important to first recognize and identify the negative actions and two redirect those feelings toward optimistic emotions.
Negative emotions such as jealousy and envy are exhausting and can be a deterrent that can cause one to lose focus on goals. Instead emotional energy should be channeled in a positive direction. It is important to take the time to learn from the encouraging experiences of others and more important think about the positive things you’ve achieved in life.
Maintaining a healthy mental state and halting the emergence of subliminal thoughts of jealousy is key. It is also important to resist the urge to compare yourself to others. In fact, comparisons of the sort tend to be one of the main reasons why people feel jealousy. The truth is we are all unique with instinctive strengths and weaknesses. One article mentioned positive feelings and emotions trigger motion and improvement whereas jealousy triggers paralysis and that is the difference. You cannot be someone else, you are “you,” so focus on being the best “you” that you can possibly be. (http://help.com/post/358311-how-do-you-control-jealousy-and-ins).
Instead of tearing people down, we should embrace and celebrate the good fortune of others. The goal in life is to extend words and actions of support and encouragement for one another. In the book, It’s Your Business by JJ Ramberg, the author mentioned the words of Paul Sethi who said,
“Leverage whatever skills you have to help all who show passion, drive, and focus in what they are setting out to create and innovate. Do not set out with any agenda, or expect to be repaid, thanked, or recognized in any way—do it to learn, to mentor and to stay on the edge of innovation yourself.”
Finally feelings of jealousy and envy are unnecessary emotions and should not occupy valuable space in our emotional existence.
A competent and self-confident person is incapable of jealousy in anything. Jealousy is invariably a symptom of neurotic insecurity.
Robert A. Heinlein
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