Is jealousy purely a negative and potentially destructive emotion, or does jealousy have any value as a motivator to drive people to improve themselves?Fandango
Few years ago, I received a random job offer from someone whom I’ve met from my previous projects & blindly offered me a package I could not refuse. I’ve got extra perks and bonuses– things I didn’t ask for. I have a happy home life, a healthy spiritual life, and I’ve got friends who are supportive, whenever, wherever. What else could I ask for, right?
I. That story above doesn’t mean that I am not hearing about my friends’ achievements. Most of them have migrated somewhere with permanent residency, some have been doing what I do earning dollars, & have become Australian, American and Canadian citizens. In our friend circle, there’s only two left in Riyadh and sometimes, others can’t help not compare us (it’s part of the Filipino culture). Honestly, I am solidly happy for them as they are happy for me. I promise, not a dash of jealousy.
II. Sometimes, I feel like, “what if we move somewhere?” We have filed an express entry to Canada but we were not chosen this year. Perhaps because it’s COVID year? It was disappointing but we have prayed for it and didn’t materialize, we can try doing the study thing and see what happens from there. A friend of mine has done that and she continuously inspires me to do the same. She’s successfully accomplished the process. She’s in Canada for a year now as a student with her family. What happens later would be up to how diligently they’d work for the nomination. And yes, of course, there’s GOD’s will. It shall prevail all the time.
Again, I was inspired not jealous, it was a feeling of pure encouragement from my friend and it wasn’t me who is vying for it, it’s my husband, I am all for God’s will.
III. Twenty-Twenty. The year of torture. My husband lost his job due to Saudization. There’s COVID that placed everyone’s life at risk. Because of COVID, my husband was not able to find a job for a year as no one is recruiting. We lost his one year financial support while still in an expensive Kingdom, with all our car bills, house rent, utility bills (that have gone mad because of the work from home situation), plus the Philippine payables. Thankfully, I still got my acceptable work benefits that unfortunately, got stripped thin in May 2020 because of the cost-cuts brought about by the pandemic. I lost my ticket allowances and my unused PTO for the last 3 years (that’s supposed to be encashed). Apart from our maimed income + the continuous bills, I had to pay by the end of the year a lumpsum of 11,000 USD for the balloon payment of our car – 3,000 USD for my husband and my son’s visa, 1500 USD for my son’s levy as a dependent, had to pay for their insurance for about 2000 USD – transfer of sponsorship for about 1000 USD, got scammed for 1000 USD, paid a guy to process the scrapping of my husband’s towed car (since 2006) as part of the transfer process for another 1000 USD. I was drowning with bills plus the threat of my husband’s and son’s deportation.
In 2020, while all my mess is happening — my sister who is younger than me by four years got promoted and is paid almost the same as I am plus she’s got all the amazing perks that I didn’t have. Flashback 2005 – I’ve long applied to my sister’s workplace back when she’s still in college but I was not a match for them apparently because I never got called at all despite my CV that’s way better than my sister’s during the time of her recruitment. I mean, what were they looking for right? Nevertheless, I was so happy for my sister when she started working there because it’s our dream and it’s come true for her. Come to think of it, based on her stories… I’ve long realized I couldn’t thrive there. I’d go crazy. People there are so cheerful and loved long greetings and hallway convos 😀
I felt weird about her promotion news. Was that jealousy? It’s an unfamiliar feeling. YES it was. I was jealous not because she is blessed (because believe me, when she is rich, I am rich as she’s the most generous person alive) BUT I was jealous because she is so blessed while I am suffering. I tried fighting the feeling but I couldn’t. I was so happy for her. But deep inside, I could not celebrate because I was drowning in sorrow. I celebrated with her but I didn’t have the joy that I should be feeling. I hated myself for feeling that way. I love my sister and I am happy for everything that’s good for her but all I can think of is how I am so beat.
Her situation didn’t motivate me to work harder because I wasn’t not working hard.
There’s nothing positive I’ve gathered from that feeling I was hurting because of jealousy, I was unhappy, and I wasn’t empathetic.
Thankfully, I am way over that depressive phase. It amazed me how I was able to raise funds for our dues without having to bother my parents or my sister while still living a normal life of takeouts, gaming, streaming, etc… It is not just resolving the money issues that’s amazed me, it was also being able to deal with the process and making this happen… my husband being transferred and them not getting deported, finding a sponsor to transfer to, and yes, finding a job! This was a hell of a year! GOD INDEED IS FULL OF WONDERS AND HAS PULLED ME THROUGH AND MADE ALL THESE POSSIBLE.
To answer Fandango’s question, for me, jealousy is purely a negative and potentially destructive emotion because there’s a certain feeling of pure joy and inspiration that we can gather from seeing others that is totally not associated with being jealous — that feeling for me is where we should be channeling our motivations from.
But that’s just me.