Jealousy and competition

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Feeling jealous

Have you ever asked yourself why a man might feel jealous of one of his friends and not of a celebrity who is more popular?

Yes there are lots of cases where people envy celebrities but why don’t people feel as jealous towards them as they feel towards those who work with them?

Moreover, have you noticed that an engineer can rarely become jealous of a successful doctor while he can become really jealous of another successful engineer who works with him, what is that all about??

jealousy and competition

The answer to these questions are simple, we only feel jealous when we think that we are in a direct competition with the person we are jealous of.

The guy who feels jealous when one of his workmates is praised by the manager is actually afraid of losing the promotion to that competitor.

The man who feels jealous when his wife talks to other men is afraid that one of the other men wins the competition and takes his wife from him. In a relationships the feelings of jealousy can make your relationship partner uncomfortable and can result in ending the relationship.

In my book The ultimate guide to maintaining a healthy relationship i explained how fixing your own insecurities and fears can help you become less jealous and can make your relationships become more healthy.

If you are jealous of a movie star then most probably you are afraid that he captures the attention and win the hearts of your friends and of the person you like. If you thought of the relationship between you and the movie star as a competition for attention then you will surely feel jealous of him.

Jealousy and weakness

Is jealousy a sign of weakness? Yes in most cases it is.
You will never feel jealous of someone unless you think that he is a tough competitor and unless you are questioning your own ability to beat him.

The more jealous you feel towards a person the more weak you think you are compared to him. If someone kept talking behind your back and kept saying bad things about you then don’t feel bad because in many cases this can be regarded as a verbal confession that you are better than him. (see Why Are Some People Overly Critical and Sarcastic).

If you found yourself feeling jealous of other people then consider it the time to start changing things about yourself instead of criticizing or hating them.

We all might feel jealous at certain points of our lives but those who really understand jealousy will try to fix their problems while others will only become envious and full of hatred.

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