Since my last post I have relocated myself and family to the South of France. If you are anything like me - what Myers Briggs calls a 'sensing personality', you might picture the South of France as a warm and relaxing place where one may sit under the shade of an olive tree sipping red wine, sampling fine cheeses and pastries; spending eternal summer days musing about philosophical aspects of your life. The thought creates images of a sunshine-filled, indulgently stress-free existence.
You may begin to wonder what your own life would be like in this type of environment. How fantastic it would be to have a life like that! To live out your days without a care in the world with nothing on your hands except time and butter from your croissant. Quality time that is so precious in your ordinary, everyday world. No rush hour traffic, no boring meetings and no need to ever scrape ice of your car in the morning. Idyllic isn't it?
Now be honest. Are you feeling a little jealous yet?
Jealousy can be a deep-seated and destructive behavioural characteristic.
We all have the capacity to be jealous and I imagine we have all realised our own jealous nature at some point in our lives. But of course, there is a huge difference from being occasionally jealous of something or someone as opposed to having jealousy rule the majority of your life.
Many people believe that jealousy is directly linked with other emotions such as love and hatred. Whereas I believe that jealousy is a marker of self-worth. And it's because of our own esteem needs in Maslow's hierarchy, which are of course, perceptions of self-worth; that we see jealous behaviours in the workplace.
American writer Charley Reece (whose own views I would not normally associate with) wrote that:
'If malice or envy were tangible and had a shape, it would be the shape of a boomerang.'
I think that this is an excellent analogy - despite my general dislike of Reece.
Those consumed by jealousy can never truly be happy and at peace with themselves. As their skewed perceptions of what others 'possess' serve as reminders of what a poor hand they have been dealt and of what they have possibly missed out on in their earlier life.
I am sympathetic to jealous people, to a point; but most can improve their own sense of worth if they really want to.
What the jealous refuse to accept on a subconscious level is the truth of the matter.
Life in the South of France has so far been great - but not without pain I can assure you. And I too long for days where I may sit under a tree (when it eventually does stop raining!) and catch up on all of the books I have collected over the years. We are surrounded by people who speak a different language and where the stores close for two to three hours of the day - usually just when you really need to buy something. And surprisingly and somewhat worst of all..
Croissants are really expensive!
Wishing you all the very best in all that you do,