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One would hope that almost any job success would bring cheers from colleagues, but all too often it turns out quite the opposite. I'm at the point in my career where it is appropriate to consider my next stage. But with every option, I can already hear the naysayers dissecting and criticizing my decision.

The knowledge that people will comment can be crippling.

If you take a pay cut to start a new career direction, you'll be seen as a washout.

It undermines the confidence of the job seeker; it contaminates the mind of current or potential employers; it destroys one's dignity in his community.

It also gives the speaker permission to do less with his own life, to feel complacent with his own mediocrity.

This was a good idea, and Cain is the first to do it.

Abel responds in a healthy way: he sees his brother's act honoring the Almighty, and he decides to imitate him by making his own offering.

" A schoolmate became a tenured university professor.

A few years later, another schoolmate commented, "He hasn't published anything lately." A lawyer leaves private practice for a senior in-house position at a non-profit corporation.' -- or make the success seem smaller, crush it, eliminate it, kill it. We can be inspired by the example, or we can tear it down; we can emulate the person or we can diminish him. Our sages compare speaking negatively about someone to murder.The running commentary on how everyone's career is going is harmful in many ways.Imagine if we were jealous of our fellow's humility and self-sacrifice as we are of his wealth and honor?We are told that Cain's offering was from the poorest of his produce, and Abel's was the choicest of his flock.Because this response is human, Judaism holds the person who announces someone's positive career step responsible for the inevitable negative reactions.

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