Have you felt jealous of late? It’s not uncommon so don’t feel surprised if you did. Or shame. Most of us feel it at some point. Our triggers may vary. The impact might vary. Our ability to deal with it may vary. But it is there, lurking. The word jealousy stems from the French jalousie, formed from jaloux (jealous), and further from Low Latin zelosus (full of zeal), in turn from the Greek word ζήλος (zēlos), sometimes “jealousy”). It is loosely interchanged with envy. 

It starts when you are young. It usually manifests as sibling rivalry. It is rooted in a fight for survival. Food, affection, love. As a child you don’t take chances. You want it all. You don’t even understand the world enough to know that there might be enough. Who knows when love might run out. Any parent would know sibling rivalry is not restricted to a fellow child. It can easily extend to all and sundry. 

Once you grow up, you may abandon the need for love from parents. You most certainly can cook your own mac and cheese. Yet jealousy does not disappear. It just finds new things to latch on to. Friendships, relationships, material things, looks or academic excellence. The list is long. The feeling much like you were cut to the quick. 

As you mature surely you should shed the emotion. You are no longer fighting for survival. Or are you? The answer probably lies in your belief in abundance. In reality I would argue there is truly abundance in the world. Yes even that girl or boy you coveted. At least biologically speaking there are enough of the species. So it is with almost everything you need to live. You just need to find it. Remember our ancestors survived millennia with much less. They would not even understand what owning a house meant. They most likely carried it with them. Surely they were happy. Relative to them we live amidst abundance. Has your jealousy lived past its sell by date?


Ritesh is a born again health enthusiast and holds a Certificate in Physiology from Harvard Medical School and a Certificate in Nutrition from Tufts University.