Why should I be happy for others?

It is a fair question right? Why should I be happy for others? They haven’t been happy for me! Why should I be doing all the hard work? Isnt it time that someone else does the hard work for me as well? Well I would prefer that and I would also proudly say that I am a jealous fellow, it is not that things pass by me without the shred of jealousy. I have felt jealous about a lot of things in life, the jobs, the marks, looks, opportunities, sometimes I have even felt jealous of people who are extremely close to me and related to me as well. Its one another emotion and its not something I would be ashamed of either.

It would perhaps be impossible to lead a life without jealousy and I am definitely saying that it certainly has its own place in our mind. But over time I think something that made sense that the jealousy is trying to convey something. Each emotion we have is certainly a signal, a thought process and a negative emotion is an indication that something is not going in the expected format. In such a case, how do we tackle with it, how do we deal with it.

1)    Stop labeling it bad!

Like we said – jealousy is an emotion, it is almost always very easy to blame the negative emotions, trying to mask them in a smile and stay in denial cos that makes us feel a little bigger than that. But that doesn’t meant that the emotion doesn’t exist. We know it, our friends know it, people related to us know it and deep down at one corner they are even a little proud at times that this is making you jealous.

2)    Accept it

Well accept the fact that you are jealous of something. I am not asking you to do it publically, I know it is embarrassing. But accept it to yourself and try to understand why you are feeling jealous. Is it a way of your mind telling you that it was an outcome you deserved and desired and is happening for someone else you know. The fact is you are not jealous that someone else got it, you are unhappy that you didn’t and that is a very fair emotion.

3)    How can you act on it?

Well, what are the ways you can think about acting on a strand of jealousy? Well you can go ahead and burn their house down but that is not going to give you what you are looking for! Perhaps it is time to look inward and see what you can do. If you think that an outcome is happening for someone, try and identify why! And you need to come up with a better and a more specific answer than LUCK! I am not going to debate luck since that is not in my control but I am trying to identify what best I can do in order to get that result and get to action immediately. Cos words may have a soothing sympathizing effect on you, but they are not going to offer you any solution. You have to find it on your own!

4)    Fake happiness for your friend!

I know what you are thinking, it is fake, it is untrue and I don’t like being dishonest. Well probably you are right, but being jealous in the first place is in itself being dishonest in one way! Like I said, lets stop labeling things for a while and try see why. Of course I agree sometimes it is very hard but also sometimes there is not much of a choice. Some other things take a bigger priority. There is no point in winning a battle and losing the war. Look at the bigger picture and sometimes it is ok to feel good for others than yourselves. It helps us get out of the shell we are in and see the world a little more in the holistic front. And also sometimes, your body does have a very strong effect on your mind, the more you smile, the lighter you feel!

5)    Actually try being Happy!

I heard you – Easier said than done! Of course, most things in life always are easier said than done and that’s exactly why so few people end up doing it! There is a thin line which demarcates the average and people above it, that is the extra bit of effort that it takes in being the bigger man/woman. The emotion of a giver is a lot more fulfilling than that of a receiver. I would say – assume the position of a giver. I know it hurts, well it doesn’t hurt cos your friend got it, it only hurts cos you didn’t and you know it. So stop feeling bad about your friend, he is being the victim of something which is not his fault and I know you are better than that! So assume that role, you are there to share happiness of a friend and while trying to do so, jealousy becomes an emotion of the past.

Well honestly, if you look at the big question – Why you should be happy for others? Well you’re not exactly doing it for others. You are doing it for yourself and in the process you are circulating happiness around. Two at the cost of one isn’t it? 😉

Some books you might find interesting : 

The Essence of Happiness – Dalai Lama  :  

Stumbling on happiness – Daniel Gilbert



23 Responses to "Why should I be happy for others?"

  1. loved it totally…will re read it. And thank you so much for promoting my post. Which actually means u were happy for me weren’t you…or…
    Now write another post…on this or…hahahaha just kidding…chillax i am actually happy u brought me HERE. Cheers 🙂

    1. He he.. Guilty as charged ;)..

      Thank you Shivani, glad you liked the article and thanks for the lovely comment.

      Would love to keep hearing more from you. Have a lovely day!

      Vinay 🙂

  2. yeah Vinay i was contemplating on writing one aunty acid post myself…and was actually refraining from doing so…but after reading urs i think i will give it a shot.

  3. well put!! simple and practical. love your last line…:) it is also interesting to see how people react when you even feel genuinely happy for them. some actually don’t believe it 🙂 they look for any hint of resentment or jealousy and the minute you leave it forms the topic of discussion as to how genuine the reaction was. weird!

    1. Thank you Preethi 🙂 .. Pleasure to hear from you. I think most people don’t realize if we are really happy for them. I used to keep asking why, they I realized why I am doing this – I realized the only reason was that I was feeling actually happy doing that. The moment focus went back to this, things started feeling a lot simpler and easier. People are weird and I guess so are we 😀 .. Best is to try and keep guessing the ways and means and something or the other seems to be new each time!

      1. totally agree with you 🙂 once i realized that it frankly did not matter how the other person reacted, either way… things are much easier. Fact is its tough to come across genuine people these days. when we do come across one…guess its tough to believe.

        1. I couldn’t agree more Preethi, It is definitely tough to find genuine people out there and the real ones are sometimes afraid to bring out that in them. It kinda feels that they are masking the real ones in order to avoid getting hurt. It probably is for the best, or else it is sometimes too easy for a few people to take advantage of some !

  4. I somehow don’t agree with this line (second para, first sentence) –
    “It would perhaps be impossible to lead a life without jealousy and I am definitely saying that it certainly has its own place in our mind.”

    As a child I used to be jealous but as I grew old the Jealousy factor completely disappeared. I don’t get jealous of anything, anymore. Rather I get inspired if I find it worth appreciating. Communicating it to the concerned person depends on my comfort level, but jealously never props up – never, ever. After contemplating over it for some time, I found out that the reason behind loss of jealousy emotion is ‘belief in self’ and ‘respect for qualities of others’.

    I think below mentioned thought might prove helpful in heading towards zero jealousy, though the journey for me was quite natural.

    “Absorb what is useful, discard what is not, add what is uniquely your own.” ~ Master Bruce Lee

    1. Dear Nikhil, thank you for your thoughts. I very much appreciate the thought you shared here. It’s a very interesting line of thought you mentioned here. However much I’d like to believe jealousy as an objective front, I somehow believe that it is a very subjective idea. But I do see your point as well, a life without jealousy is certainly the high road in life. Perhaps a level of evolution as well. But I also believe in the simplicity of thoughts and the importance of each emotions including jealousy. For me perhaps I don’t think I’d associate myself with a life without jealousy. I perhaps believe that I’m quite a jealous fellow, and the only factor I’d like to see is the constructive form of it, that form which elevates us to a better part of life. I still find the concept of a perfect life a little hard to relate to. I’d believe all emotions are divine, including jealousy as long as we work them for us. If life without that is possible , kudos to that but I’d certainly prefer a life with it and that working in my favour.

      Thank you for the thoughts Nikhil, glad that it opened up a new line of ideas. Always a pleasure to brainstorm thoughts 🙂

      1. Dear Vinay, thanks for the appreciation. I respect your thinking but my views somewhat differ. You pointed out that ‘all emotions are divine’ which I think is subject to deeper thinking. What I think of emotions is that some of them are partly divine while others are a result of societal evolution. For instance, emotions of pleasure and pain is divine but emotion of jealousy is an output of societal evolution. Emotions are also subject to your life experiences and knowledge. Like they say, knowledge lays down the path to wisdom but at the cost of your innocence. The thing is we have to sacrifice our innocence to achieve wisdom. Now it is left for individual to decide what they prefer to chose – innocence or wisdom.

        I appreciate your belief in ‘simplicity of thoughts’ but could not resist myself from going deeper on this one. I hope you don’t mind. 🙂

        1. Thank you Nikhil :). I think it is a very nice point you brought out, it is only when our mind is subjected to a few questions that we think and the inception of ideas is almost always a fascinating part!
          Perhaps Nikhil, and I also think it depends on how we define a positive or a negative emotion. I would reiterate at the cost of appearing repetitive that an emotion which drives us towards our goals, an emotion that helps us is a positive one as opposed to the one which holds us back!
          A lot of definitions I agree are societal implications and it also depends on how much we are ready to dissociate ourselves from the society and sometimes our own judgement as well! And I believe we do not have to sacrifice anything to reach wisdom, wisdom sometimes could take the role of acknowledging the scenario around us and deciding how much we let it influence us.
          I certainly love the idea of going deeper into a thought Nikhil, any ideas are always welcome and almost always open for an argument :). That is the only way I know to grow 🙂

          Looking forward to hearing more from you 🙂


          1. I agree, Vinay. Emotions are the seeds of motivation. In fact, I think, emotionless person can never stay motivated. Positive emotions are indeed necessary to motivate us, rather I would say that they can even be sufficient condition to succeed under certain circumstances.

            You have correctly said that positive emotions drives us towards our goal. However, In contemporary pragmatic economic world order, emotions have taken a back seat. Showing emotions is seen as a sign of weakness and unprofessional. I think, emotions don’t get their due share of respect. Most people in today’s world are raising their intellectual quotient at the cost of their emotional quotient.
            I highly doubt the sustainability of such method of working. Emotional suppression might lead to contagion dehumanizing effect in all the spheres of life, personal or professional.

            I am eager to know your thoughts on the same. Thanks

          2. So true Nikhil, I don't think there can be anyone without any emotions and if there were, I would really wonder how they live!?!

            There is so much of beauty in each one of them, such driving force and charisma and they really can take us to the greatest heights we can imagine. I do agree that people prefer to neglect emotions or even suppress them most times. It takes me by a bit of a surprise since they are the very fibre of us. In a way it is saying no to our own selves! Perhaps I may never go on to understand that!

            I completely agree with you, it looks more of an adhoc fix as opposed to a sustainable solution. Emotions are the very signals that we are alive, they are the ones which tell us who we are. Sometimes I feel that we are so busy leading a life that we tend to forget what it is all about!!

  5. I like this post very much. This question is very genuine that arises frequently in minds of people. In fact happiness is a mental state. Happiness can be experienced with or without any reasons. Whenever we appreciate someone, we feel contended. When we become happy on others, we get positive energy and feel satisfied inside. In my blog I have written an article on happiness,
    “Reasons to be happy”
    Here is the link:
    Please visit the link.

    Your blog is fantastic!!Keep writing more…….

    1. Thank you Sweta :).. Glad you liked the post, I have often wondered “What’s in for me” and turns out there is a lot more than I had thought of :).

      It’s really a simple and nice set of rules to enhance our lives and keep adding value to it. I believe there is a lot of life in constant improvement and acknowledgement of the same. Makes our lives kinda exciting dont you think?

      Thank you for sharing the article :).. Look forward to hearing more from you. Always a delight to meet someone with such similar interests 🙂


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