My Thoughts On… Jealousy

This is a trait I’ve started to notice more and more in people. In fact, I think jealousy among people is on the rise, and that’s not a good thing.

Jealousy

I think it is quite important to define what jealousy is. I also believe it is important to go over the history of the word, because it shares a similar meaning to another word: envy.

Jealousy is an emotion; the term generally refers to the thoughts or feelings of insecurity, fear, concern, and envy over relative lack of possessions, status or something of great personal value, particularly in reference to a comparator. Envy is very similar, but it also comes with a little extra. The person either desires it or wishes that the other lacked it. However, nowadays, both these words have come to mean the same thing.

I do not have any issues with the first part of it. Humans have developed an innate trait to want and need. It’s what drives us. However, when people start wishing misfortune on others is where I take issue. And this is the issue I’d like to talk about today.

Let me first start by sharing my personal experience with jealousy. Some time ago, I shared a link to my Supergirl collection on Reddit. I shared it to the Supergirl and the SupergirlTV subreddits, which I follow. I was somewhat surprised to see that the post actually got downvoted by a lot of people. Considering the fact that other posts which can simply be labeled as garbage were getting upvoted, I was somewhat confused.

Sure, I did get a few positive posts, but in general, the reaction was cold. Especially when posting to what I would assume would be a Supergirl fanbase. I had no explanation for it. It was only after a few weeks, while browsing Reddit and someone posted a picture of their large collection of Funko pops did someone post the message that made it all click for me: “I’m so jealous”.

Indeed, the cold reaction I got from the Reddit was not due to the poor quality of post I made, or to the sub-par standard of my collection. Far from it, my collection is, by far, the rarest, and largest Supergirl collection in the world. The downvotes I got were because people were jealous. I had something, not that they could not even afford, but they could never have even if they had the money. Some of the pieces in my collection are one of a kind. And they couldn’t have it.

I don’t let people’s perception of me affect me. I couldn’t care less what people think of me, or whether people wish me ill. People are irrelevant to me. Especially the faceless names on the internet. I simply wanted to share my collection with others, to show people that there are others out there that love Supergirl. Whether or not people choose to appreciate that is up to them.

But jealousy is rampant everywhere. Strangely enough, the second example I want to give is also on Reddit. Reddit has a user named “GallowBoob” who, at the time of this post, has more than 24 million Reddit karma. That’s a lot. Typically, a successful post may get 50 karma, and a viral one maybe a few thousand. Unsurprisingly, he’s not very popular among Redditors.

The reason why he’s not is cited as because he is “is a Reddit user that has amassed enormous amounts of karma while submitting little to no original content”. While I do understand the intent of Reddit is to submit original content, very few people do so. Most people re-post popular content. Additionally, the karma system is inherently flawed, because it encourages people to make popular posts. What better post to make than one that’s been tried and tested?

People are just jealous of Gallowboob because he’s beating them at their own game. He plays their game better than anyone else. And people don’t like that. He’s simply doing what everyone else is doing, just better, more efficiently, and faster.

Jealousy has a significant negative impact on a person’s life. I’m not a jealous person. I’ve come to terms with the fact that others will have things I can never have. And I’m okay with that. It is part of the reason why I consider myself to be a relatively happy person. I’m not looking for more. I just want enough.

But here’s something else I also learnt about jealousy. It can rub off on you. As I said earlier, I am not a jealous person. However, at work, I was surrounded by some jealous people. Incredibly jealous, toxic people. And one day, I felt it. Someone had received something that I didn’t. Not only that, it wasn’t of any value to me. And I didn’t need it either. I’m pretty sure I did not even want it. However, it bothered me that I didn’t get one. That feeling, somewhat threw me off. It’s not something I’ve ever felt before. And it’s not something I want to feel again. I distanced myself from those people, as a result.

Surrounding yourself with good people is the first step to countering jealousy. Positivity in life and being happy with what you have is important. And this leads to a nice positive feedback loop. You end up happier, less jealous and the cycle repeats.

As I said, I’m happy with where I am in life. I had to work hard for what I have. But what I have makes me happy and I don’t look for anything more. I don’t see what others have as a lack of what I have. And I do understand that others will have things I can never have. And I’m fine with that. We can’t have it all. All we can do is learn to accept and work with the cards we have dealt, and be happy. Negativity is not a requirement.

So, do you know anyone that is jealous? How has that impacted you? Let me know in the comments!

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