As human beings, we always seem to want more, to have everything, even things we don’t actually want.
When we get what we want, we experience a feeling of euphoria and satisfaction. Then we look over to someone next to us and see that they have more and suddenly feel very unsatisfied. It becomes a vicious cycle where we’re constantly trying to be better (whether it is financially, socially or spiritually) than others.
However, this unconscious, or dependent, way of living, that is to be under the mercy of jealousy just makes life harder than it really needs to be.
Over the years, I’ve tried to understand the question of jealousy like why we get jealous and if it’s possible to get over it.
I’ve watched many videos and read a ton of blogs that wisely say, “there’s no reason to be jealous! You’re unique!”
While that does provoke a feeling of superiority and a sense of self-approval, it is rather short-lived when you wonder to yourself if someone else is not more unique than you.
Unique is such a broad term that could mean absolutely anything from one person to another. It’s like when dating gurus tell you to “be yourself” and then you will be liked. But what does it mean to be yourself? How much of yourself can you be? We all know deep down that not everyone will actually like us; only a selected few whose personality align with ours.
Today, I would like to propose a new way to overcome jealousy.
Instead of just telling yourself that you’re unique, ask yourself honestly, for example, when you see someone who manages to land a job, if you truly want to have the job that they have. If no, then reassure yourself that you don’t have to worry about doing something you’re not even passionate about. If yes, then be excited by the fact that that person is going to shift the direction of the field and when you get there, you can further steer it towards a better version of itself.
Be grateful (really) that you are one person and you cannot do everything, like work multiple fields, at once to make a change.
This calls for teamwork between people. This reduces your stress levels and gives you time to relax and have fun with living.
Think about it. When you multitask or you have a to-do list, you feel overwhelmed and frustrated. When you only have one or two things to do, you feel happy and you’re more grounded in the present moment.
Moral of the story: don’t be jealous of others’ accomplishments because we are all a part of a gigantic team and each member is contributing to the transformation (hopefully bettering) of the world. Be honest with yourself when asking if what someone has is really what you want. Remember to learn to work with others not against them because you could the one to lead the next breakthrough. However, you cannot do that alone. You need others, even if it’s just reading others’ (who may be dead) papers. Just know that others are just as human as you are and they need you as much as you need them.
Liberate yourself and reach out, rather than reject someone’s offering hand.
Let’s be humanity together.