Most people are jealous of your successes.
We see jealousy everywhere. It should come as no surprise that people are jealous of you. And odds are you are jealous of some people.
When someone is jealous of you, it is decidedly awkward and unpleasant. What may surprise you is their jealousy hurts them more than it hurts you.
Jealousy is unhelpful.
More relevantly, jealousy is illogical.
Here are 8 reasons why you should not be jealous of other people’s fortunes and successes.
1 —You May Not Be Willing to Pay the Price They Paid
The CEO may have achieved professional success at the cost of his marriage.
The Wall Street tycoon may have given up his dream of becoming a musician.
The successful executive may have missed her children’s dance recitals and baseball games.
Success comes with a price. People who pursue success consciously or unconsciously pay the price to achieve said success.
It is absurd to be jealous of their success without knowing what price they paid.
You may not be willing to pay the price they did.
2 — They May Be Unhappy Inside
If material success correlated to happiness, the millionaires and billionaires would be some of the happiest people.
As the cliche goes, money does not solve your problems, money solves your money problems.
If you have read any tabloid, you would have a glimpse into the problems celebrities have.
The rich and successful are humans too. They have the same human problems as the rest of the planet. Scratch that — they are likely to have more problems than the rest of the planet.
Behind their facade could be a cesspool of unhappiness.
3 — You Lose an Opportunity to Learn From their Successes
Most successful people want to leave a legacy.
They are interested in sharing their secrets with the right students and mentees. They get a kick out of it.
If you develop the right mindset, you may be able to tap into their brains.
If you are jealous, however, you lose a golden opportunity to learn the secret of their success.
And if you think they can’t make out that you are jealous, think again. The same way people can smell fear, they can sniff out jealousy.
Eschew jealousy and be proactive in learning from the successful.
4 — Their Successes May Come With Toxic By-Products
Success often comes with some ugly friends. And it may not be easy to ward off these unwelcome friends. Human beings want to be polite.
You hear actors checking in and out of rehabs. All the time.
You want their success, yes. But would you want the entire package?
Chances are you wouldn’t.
5 — They May Not be “Successful” After All
They may have maxed out their credit cards to buy the expensive Mercedes.
They may have borrowed money from a variety of sources to fund their failing businesses.
They may not own what they claim to own — it may all be a big fat lie.
Treat their “success story” with a healthy dose of skepticism.
When you wouldn’t want to be in their position, why on earth would you be jealous of them?
6 — Would You Want Someone to be Jealous of You?
Apply the golden rule.
You wouldn’t want anyone to be jealous of you, would you? It is singularly unpleasant. You’d like them to be happy for your successes. You’d want them to wish you well.
Now return the favor forward.
Don’t be jealous of anyone. Wish them well.
7 — Being Jealous Does Nothing to Help Us
Does being jealous of someone help us in any tangible way?
Yet, our emotions get the better of us, and we instinctively become jealous of people’s successes.
Step one is reasoning it out intellectually — jealousy does not help you in any way whatsoever.
Step two is to repeatedly practice weeding out jealousy from every pore of our being.
It is not easy. Then again, nothing that is worth your while comes easy.
And a life without the presence of jealousy is completely worth it.
8 — Being Jealous Feels Terrible
Remember how you felt the last time you were jealous of someone?
I felt like crap. They had something I did not have. Jealousy oozed from every pore of my being.
I don’t want to feel like that again.
Since then, I have tried to feel good about people’s successes. It is a much better feeling.
It is now common knowledge that the brain’s happiness centers light up when we are happy for other’s successes (when I first read this in Swamiji’s The Book of Kindness, I was amazed).
Why would I want to be jealous and intentionally choose to feel terrible?
Image Credit: Brannon Naito on Unsplash