literary magic

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Confession: I’m a jealous person.  It’s not something we generally go around admitting, is it?  But if I think about it, dig deep and stay honest, I would bet everyone gets a case of green envy every now and again.

We’re told that comparison is the thief of joy, and jealousy is.. well.. evil.  But I tend to think about it differently, and I might even go so far as to say I like being jealous.   Today, for instance, I was reading Tell The Wolves I’m Home when I came across this passage:

“I felt like I had proof that not all days are the same length, not all time has the same weight. Proof that there are worlds and worlds and worlds on top of worlds, if you want them to be there.”
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I closed the book and thought about the beauty and poignancy in that transcendent sentence – about how lyricism and thought combined into some kind of literary magic.  Sure as luck, I found myself wishing I could write like that – I was jealous.
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But you know what the jealousy did?  It made me want to put down the book and grab my journal and write write write until I came up with something original and true and inspiring.  I might not ever write anything worth publishing, but I’m inspired to try.  If jealousy motivates me to dream and work and strive, can it really be that bad?
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What are your thoughts on the rock  garden I made?  I wanted to take pictures of flowers, but since they aren’t blooming yet, I had to get a little creative.  My idea?  Join the ranks of Love Rocks!  Love Rocks is an organization that encourages people to paint rocks and then leave them around their community for strangers to find.   Bet you aren’t jealous of my rocks… 🙂

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wish

I love when other people share good news, and I’ve always found it puzzling that society refers to this as “bragging.” What’s wrong with talking about our joys and sharing our happiness? If you ask me, nothing. Feel free to ring me when you win the lottery or fall in love – I’m going to want the details.

You know what else?  I want to hear about your struggles and hardship, too.  People are not meant to go through life alone, and when we share stories of pain, we remind people in similar situations that they are not alone.

Professor Sonja Lyubomirsky at the University of California, Riverside, researches the nature of human happiness, particularly why some people are happier than others, and how we can train ourselves to be more happy in general. She identifies an individual’s response to social comparison as a key factor for determining their personal happiness.

Her work suggests that happy people are more likely to celebrate the success and good fortune of their friends, while unhappy people are more likely to feel jealous of their nearest and dearest.

Instead of comparing our differences, let’s celebrate them, and each of us can begin to push each other onward and upward.

And, what’s more, we’ll all be a little happier as a result : )