Dealing with jealousy at work
Jealousy in the work place is a common problem. Just by telling it a
common problem, can we ignore it? This is a dangerous ailment. No doubt,
it is a serious ailment which will ruin one's life. Hence it warrants a
fairly lengthy discussion.
Successful leaders learn to work with their subordinates to
achieve mutual goals
"A Competitive jealousy" This is yet another set of words. But it is
such a strong negative, yet common emotion that so many have to battle
in the workplace today. Instead of working together and being openly
supportive of individual talents, people often mistakenly turn to a
counterproductive tug of war to get ahead of those they admire. In
certain well to do organizations, I have seen management tries to
recognize the talents of their associates. By looking at their day to
day activities, I have a strong doubt whether they do stick to their
talk. I am in possession of many evidences to prove that they talk
something very fabulous but does something quite contrast.
Why do so many feel the need to manipulate and hurt others in order
to succeed? Abundance is for everyone, all you have to do is to ask for
it. Imagine what could be accomplished if we all could focus our
energies together on the task at hand rather than dwelling on negative
Yet unfortunately, that form of negativity often does exist in
today's workplace. Thus, one has to endure past the politics of others
in order to survive in the employment realm. One thing that can help is
to read between the lines. Look past the hostility of others to view
their insecure admiration. When disagreements happen in the workplace,
it is often because your talents have been noticed and jealousy abounds.
Sometimes, people at the middle level try to hiding facts and hurting
others in order to prevent from gaining credit for the work they have
done. In my case, I have been deprived in many occasions getting into
such positions for which I am deserved for. This means you excelled
enough at what you do that others felt threatened by your success.
If you have encountered resistance from insecure coworkers, then it
may be a result of you having been especially good at what you do, not
the opposite. Do not let condescending remarks hurt your pride or
self-image. On the other hand, have you ever felt yourself resenting
another person just because of their perceived success? Do you hear
yourself justifying their success with some trivial reason so that you
can easily dismiss them (and consequently feel good about yourself)?
Through my experiences, I have come to learn that this instinctive
emotion is merely trying to protect our ego, by burying our inadequacies
and insecurities. Our mind is at work protecting us in the comforts of
our little cocoon shell. But to what benefit does it serve?
Professional jealousy reveals professional insecurity and feelings of
ineptitude on your coworker's/leaders part. Sometimes you can alleviate
that fear with positive reinforcement of their talents, but more often
than not this person's toxic thinking lies beyond your control. It can
often have more to do with their self-image than your treatment of them.
Before you start your workday, think about your strength and do not
get hurt by snide comments of others and tell yourself "I am protected
from negative energy. This person has no influence over me."
Then go about your day, confident in your inner beauty, conquering
the insecurities around you warm in the knowledge that the universe sees
and values the amazing person that you are! You will end up with the
amazing results at the end of the day.
In a workplace, jealousy can be the fear of disrespect from our
peers. For an example, if you feel that she is better than me, and then
I will be replaced, jealousy will creep in. In a business, the fear of
loss in market-share, sales, customers and bankruptcy; company jealousy
will creep into the business even without our knowledge.
Successful leaders learn to work with their subordinates to achieve
mutual goals and objectives. However, in any organization there will be
individuals who are jealous of the success attained by their leader.
This jealousy often stems from their fear of personal failure. Leaders
must recognize the threat these employees pose not only to the leader's
career, but also to the overall performance of the organization.
In a certain organization, a leader who was instrumental in
implementing Japanese 5S system in the organization was subject to a lot
of harassment from his colleagues. Some people used to pass remarks at
him saying it is his 5S through jealousy.
But he did not care any of those remarks and continued its activities
until he reached its successful implementation. Jealousy in any form is
not healthy: it is highly detrimental to the organization's success.
Jealous individuals are not team-oriented, as they are only concerned
with their personal needs.
The presence of such employees is counterproductive to leadership's
attempts to focus on the needs of all and accomplish mutual goals.
It is important for leaders to recognize the existence of
professional jealousy and its impact on the success of the organization.
Leaders cannot simply ignore individuals that harbor jealousy; they must
work with each jealous employee to correct behaviors and to address and
resolve the underlying problem.
There are many causes of professional jealousy. The most common are
examined below, with techniques suggested for resolving each problem.
The following are methods to help reduce and eliminate this negative
thought pattern, if you are a person who is suffering from the ailment
1. Fully Experience the Feeling- Unless by telling yourself
not to feel jealous, you will never be able to get out of it. "What we
resist persists". In order to eliminate the negative emotions, all what
you got to do is to deeply understand the situation.
Allow yourself to fully feel the feeling of jealousy. By facing the
emotion directly and fully experiencing it, you'll see that the feeling
will start to diminish. I have also found this experience to work with
anger towards another, and fear of a situation.
"To overcome jealousy, just see how the jealousy came into your
system, just analyze the sequence of thoughts and emotions in your
system and then undo it by reasoning out the whole process with your
intelligence."- Swamiji Nithyananda
2. Status Quo
Some individuals resist change for a variety of reasons. In most
cases, they become jealous as their power base is threatened by a
transition in management styles, or they fear being subsequently exposed
Leaders must sit down with these individuals and have a frank
discussion to get them to disclose the reasons behind their jealousy and
resistance to change. To help resolve the situation, leaders should
stress the extreme importance of teamwork in the accomplishment of
mutual goals and objectives, with change being part of the equation. If
individuals refuse to change, their behavior will become increasingly
obvious as the organization moves forward. Ultimately, they will be
compelled to change or forced to leave the organization. So, before the
process plays out, leaders can personally help struggling employees
achieve their personal goals by offering suggestions to allay any major
concerns that are responsible for their jealousy.
3. Love Yourself - "If you don't fully accept and love
yourself as you are, you could be more prone to comparing yourself to
others as a way of artificially boosting your feeling of self-worth."-
Self - worth comes with self-appreciation and love. People who are
truly comfortable and secure with themselves, rarely let jealousy get in
the way. Look within, spend time with yourself, get to know the real
you. Choose to focus on yourself, instead of the person you are jealous
of. Use your understanding of desires and your mind to change your
perception. Know that you have everything you need to be whole, happy
and complete right inside of you. Know that if you feel something is
missing that you can have it, you can achieve it.
4. Stop Comparing- Nithyananda said, "Comparison is the seed
and jealousy is the fruit! Comparison leads to jealousy, and both are
mind-created states. "Our mind is so caught up in comparison that it
misses the actual quality of what it sees. We need to drop the comparing
attitude to be able to see things as they are." (Nithyananda). Start by
appreciating the differences. See the benefits of you uniqueness.
5. Write It Out - I've always found it helpful to think on
paper. By writing down your thoughts, it gives you an opportunity to
express yourself, but also lays your options out clearly on paper. It's
like seeing the city from an airplane; you have a clearer vision of the
big-picture. Ask yourself "Why do I feel this way?" Write out all your
reasons out on paper. Write without editing, jot down anything that
comes to mind. You can organize the information later. Once you have all
your reasons, write beside each one what you can do about it. Dig deep
within yourself; find insight from your uncertainty.
6. Be Realistic - It is essential to ask yourself that the
person you are having in your mind is really a threat to you or to the
relationship or your business. If you are not gaining from the jealousy
that you are having with him, what is the purpose of having jealousy
7. Find Your Strength- Another way to get away from the
jealousy is to focus on your strengths and unique qualities. You must
feel gratitude for these gifts you have and abilities that you are
blessed with. Once you identify what they are, then shift your focus.
8. Shift Your Focus - When we are feeling negative, it is
sometimes difficult to think rationally. We are so focused on the
negative feeling that we lose the big picture.
Change your current emotional state by shifting your attention to
something completely different. Like go for a jog, or start doing the
dishes. Once you've cool down, come back to the situation with a clear
and open mind.
"Is this what we want for ourselves?"- By feeling this way, we are
giving this emotion our attention, in the process we are attracting to
us like situations and perceptions for us to continue feeling this
negative emotion. "What we sew is what we reap". If you were in their
shoes, would you want the same? How do you think the other person feel?
Put yourself in their position. When I find someone more successful in
my field, I celebrate their success as if it was
9 Credit- Some people become jealous when others receive
credit for their accomplishment. In such instances, the jealous
individual often engages in immature and damaging behavior.
Quality leaders aren't concerned with others getting the credit for a
job well done. In correspondence with superiors, a leader will usually
give all credit to his or her team.
Leaders should, however, make it a point to bolster the success of
This technique works to reduce some feelings of inadequacy that lead
While it is often difficult to deal with immature individuals,
leaders must invest the time to discuss any concerns and then attempt to
broker an agreement to resolve pressing issues. If these individuals
remain irrational, their behaviors will eventually expose their lack of
Some managers can be jealous of another manager's success because
they fear the successful manager will be apportioned a higher amount of
limited corporate resources, such as staff, funds and materials.
Leaders should talk with these individuals and work something out.
A successful resolution of this issue will increase their
department's performance, which in turn will benefit the organization as
I hope you now agree with me that jealousy is a serious ailment.
Unless you get away from it, you will never be able to get on with your