Humans beings have the capacity to experience both positive and negative emotions. Sadness, anger, happiness, sympathy and the list is endless. Out of all these one very powerful and dominating emotion is jealousy.
Is the honest answer ‘yes’ to any of the questions below:
Do you compare yourself with others often and feel good or bad after the comparison?
- Do you often find yourself feeling that you have less and others have more?
- Do you feel you deserve more than others?
- Do you feel threatened by someone?
- Can you not tolerate when someone else is praised?
- Does a small thing such as the number of likes in someone’s Facebook post bother you?
- Do you keep oscillating between feelings of arrogance and self-pity?
- How do you foresee your future? Are you always plagued by sense of uncertainty?
Consequences of jealousy
Jealousy is an emotion that seems to causes a threat to something that you value. It leads to a feeling to mistreat or harm others or wish ill for them. For example, you yourself have a great car but you wish that your neighbour should not own a car.
Jealousy creates insecurity and a fear of losing control. You yearn to move back into the comfort zone where you feel safe and within control. This does not lead to healthy relations. Your learning process slows down as you are not comfortable with others. This reduces your self-respect.
A person who is jealous cannot be seated on the seat of self-respect. You keep moving i.e. fluctuating. Today you meet a person with lesser specialties or attainments than you and you are on top of the world. You rise above the seat of self-respect and enter the dimension of ego. Tomorrow you meets someone with more specialties or attainments and your mood changes. You go below the seat of self-respect and enter the dimension of low self-esteem.
How to overcome jealousy?
Being aware of jealous feelings is the first step towards keeping it under control. Have an honest conversation about how you feel with yourself or with a close friend. It’s far healthier to talk about your negative feelings, than putting them in actions. Don’t put it off or ignore it, but rather accept it and start looking beyond it.
Next step is to understand that this feeling is my own creation. It is not being originating from someone or something. Spirituality teaches you that you are the cause of your happiness and you are the cause of your sorrow. So stop blaming others.
The next step is to observe your thoughts as if you were a detached observer. As you start observing your thoughts ask yourself if you wish to keep these thoughts. Then change the direction of your thoughts, to personal affirmations. They could be: I am aware of myself as a special person with my own unique specialties. I am aware of myself as rich and full of many invisible treasures. I am aware of myself as a content being and overflowing with happiness. This technique changes your attitudes and feelings and influences you positively.
Appreciate others: When someone succeeds appreciate them. By doing so you create a positive vibration and success is more likely to come to you.
If you try to help others succeed, you get their good wishes too, which also help you succeed in what you aim for.
Developing Self Esteem: If individuals who are better than you are getting more respect and attention you either develop jealousy towards them or a sense of low self-esteem.
Jealousy also leads to losing your existing specialities as you do not put them to use as often as you can. Example, you are a very good artist but you are jealous of someone who is a good singer. You will keep putting efforts in singing, which you may not be good at. As a result you side track or lose your existing specialities. This results in lowering your self-esteem further.
There is a great saying “If you judge a fish by its ability to climb trees, it will die thinking it is good for nothing.” Every human being is gifted with unique specialties, virtues and attainments. Focusing on others specialties leads to jealousy. Focus on your own specialties. The more you focus on your specialties by having a healthy mind-set, the more recognition you get. This understanding and acceptance of your unique qualities keeps you stable and content.
Jealousy and low self-esteem only contribute negatively in your lives. Thus you fail to excel even in those areas where you can succeed. By having a productive mind-set and a learning attitude you can excel in areas which you were not good at.
You often find people around you using incorrect means to get success. They get more attention, power, resources and appreciation from everyone. You understand that this is incorrect. Yes this wide spread sense of comparison and competition around certifies these wrong. You are under constant pressure to leave high principles and tow the general way. These extreme conditions sometimes move even the most powerful person. It causes low self-esteem and feeling of jealousy towards the socially acceptable ones.
It is important to understand that few things are temporary and less meaningful. Example fame, money, possessions, beauty etc. Inner enlightenment is permanent and more meaningful. Self respect remains depended on others if you invest time and energy on temporary things. Invest time on more meaningful aspects (inner enlightenment). This will make temporary things less important. But meaningful ones stay forever. Your self respect will not be dependent on the temporary attainments you get. Your own conscience and inner self will keep you stable and well respected. You will always remain satisfied and do what is needed, not what is good looking. Truth is its own counsel. So, enjoy the freedom in the sky of this beautiful world.
Soon we will coming up with an article on Self Respect.