How green is your grass?
When I was a kid I read a comic strip where Snoopy looked from a top of a ladder to his neighbor’s yard and said: “You ever wonder why the neighbor’s grass is greener … until you discover that the lawn is artificial”. By that time I did not understand why anyone would notice the color of the grass in the yard of another or for what reason someone would put artificial turf … childhood concerns.
Well, then I grew up and sometimes I found myself “looking at the neighbor’s yard” and wishing mine was that beautiful, larger or greener. Maybe someone has already seen mine and had the same feeling. Although it seems to be adult stuff, this is the kind of feeling that come up when you are younger.
How many times have we seen children fighting over the same toy?
Children are good by definition. One reasonably mediator doing the right thing and everyone will be happy again. But it’s very common to happen the opposite with the grown ups. Those who waste their time with these comparisons lose and are always unfortunate because they quit to appreciate what is valuable in themselves and in their lives.
I once heard an interview with a psychologist and the discussion was about envy. According to him, there are three types of envy. The destructive, self-destructive and constructive.
- The destructive envy is the one in which the person tries to destroy the happiness of whom that is the object of his envy. This is the worst version of this corrosive feeling.
- The self-destructive envy occurs when the one who is jealous lives embittered and diminished by the fact of wishing to be or have what the other is or has.
- In the constructive envy (that many here in Brazil calls “good envy”) there is enjoyment in what the other is or has and it serves as motivation to become or have which is the object of envy. Of course we can (or might) call this feeling by other names.
My suggestion: May we take care of our yard as much as we can, and then we’ll find joy in every little thing. From trees to weeds, and after all you won’t even remember the neighbor’s yard when years knock on your door.