From our e-book “We are Here to Celebrate”

woman wearing gray and brown plaid dress shirt

Andrea had a job she loved. She has been with the company for more than ten years and has quickly climbed up the corporate ladder. She had a big office and was respected by her colleagues. Then one day, Patricia was promoted to her level and Andrea did not feel that Patricia deserved the promotion. She only got promoted because of office politics and Andrea saw it as unfair. Andrea felt that she too deserved a promotion. Andrea was jealous of Patricia’s promotion and the attention she was receiving from the senior management. She had always been the flavor of the month and she loved the attention.

Andrea eventually resigned from her position to join another company. She lost her big office and is now doing work that she does not enjoy. In her previous job, her work was greatly appreciated but now, she is just seen as doing what she is paid to do.

When Andrea resigned from her company, she sent a message; either she goes or I go. Even if Patricia resigned, Andrea must recognise that she would not have gained anything apart from a temporary feeling of ego-satisfaction. But she would have damaged the perception the senior management has of her. Patricia’s gain is not her loss. This fact was not clear to her as she was blinded by jealousy.

The ego strives to be special and if someone blocks the light that is drawing attention to her, jealousy arises. Harming others out of jealousy does not make any sense because one stands to gain nothing except negative karma.

Jealousy arises from our habitual need to compete and win. This is partly due to the conditioning we received when we were growing up. When presenting our academic report cards to our parents, they looked to see what position in the class we achieved. In sports, the winner is glorified and the losers ignored. This habitual need to compete and win takes the joy out of life. When playing games, just play for the sake of playing and not winning. When we hear about others’ accomplishments, let us rejoice in their good fortune and celebrate. Let us feel good for them. It definitely beats making ourselves miserable.

The feeling of jealousy stems from our pride. It arises from the perception that the other person is superior in some way and this conclusion is made from a limited point of view. We may compare one skill with the one person’s strong point and see it as a weakness on our part and then compare another skill with another person and see it as a weakness too. This is not being fair to oneself. We cannot compare each and every skill we have against the strength of different persons. It is a losing case from the start. If Mr. A is a better speaker than Mr. B, that does not mean that Mr. A is a better man than Mr. B. Both have their strengths and weaknesses. Anyway, their happiness does not depend on one being better than the other. It depends more on One’s ability to accept Oneself.


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