A story about the perils of jealousy
George the Guitar and Peter the Piano both enjoyed
playing in a band - until jealousy came knocking…
George the Guitar and Peter the Piano were vital instruments in an
American rock band, The Stingers. The band’s goal was to land a
gig playing at The Knitting Factory in New York City, as it would
provide their band with loads of exposure.
When The Stingers played a song that featured Peter as the main
instrument, George the Guitar would grow jealous with rage. He
would sneak away and yank out the cord that connected Peter to
the amp. Unfortunately, George’s childish behavior occurred nearly
One night, the pianist got fed up with George’s childish jealousy,
stepped away from Peter the Piano and yelled, “George! Can you
stop being selfish for just one session and do your job!? Not only do
you ruin Peter’s performance, but you disrupt our entire show!”
George screamed back, “How dare you ask me to set aside my
talents so Peter the lousy Piano can shine? Do you know what a
disservice you’re doing to your musical career by putting me on the
Peter the Piano only said, “Uh, I really, uh, can’t say anything
negative about George. But, I’d just like him to stop ruining our
performances and let the band shine as a whole.”
“That will never happen! It’s either him or me,” George demanded.
At this point, the band’s leader joined in nonchalantly, “It’s your
choice. We’d like to keep you here, but we have another guitar in
storage that we can use.”
“Fine,” George grumbled, as he rocked his way out of the studio.
After just six weeks of playing without George, The Stingers landed a
gig at The Knitting Factory. They never missed George, and from
that point on, their music careers took off like a rocket!
Moral: If you aspire to succeed,
you must be a team player.
George was jealous because he felt as if Peter was constantly taking the spotlight. But
in reality, the spotlight was given to Peter. He hadn’t asked for the attention.
Rather than suggesting new song ideas that would allow the band to benefit from
using him as the most prominent instrument, George chose to act childish. He allowed
his petty jealousy and his self-centered attitude to consume him.
Like George, everyone deals with bouts of jealousy throughout their life. For example,
maybe you have a coworker who gets all of the reward even though you do all of
the work. Or perhaps your kid brother mooches off of you because he claims that he
has no money and yet just happens to dig up the cash to buy a luxury car.
These situations can cause us to be consumed by jealousy. Although unpleasant,
jealousy is a normal human emotion. However, what you do about that negative
emotion is what truly counts.
If you’re determined to succeed in your career, it’s vital that you learn to be a team
player. You may not like it and you may even choose to grumble your way to the
office every morning. But as long as you do it with an expression that even slightly
resembles a grin, you’re already paving the road to your dreams.
Acting out in a jealous rage is petty. In many instances, it may also damage the
impression you leave on others. Going into all situations with an open mind, especially
if you have a goal to attain, will boost your chances of reaching your goals.
1. How do I feel when a team member eats up the spotlight?
2. Can I change something about myself that would prompt others to see me in a
more inspirational light?
3. Do my efforts grant me the ability to rightfully stand in the spotlight?