Jealousy: some describe it as a burning feeling in their chest and some as a feeling of becoming sick. What is jealousy and how do you deal with it best? Psychologist Britt explains it to you.
There are two types of jealousy: rational jealousy and irrational jealousy. The first one is seen as reasonable jealousy, for example you have reason to feel like that because your partner cheated on you. However, irrational jealousy is based on insecurity and fear. There is no cause to feel this way, but still you make up bad scenarios in your head.
For both forms of jealousy it is ok to feel jealous, sad and angry. But that it is ok, does not mean that you should actually behave in a jealous way, like constantly checking your partner. This behaviour stands in the way of you and your partner’s happiness. Luckily there is another way!
Take a step back
While feeling jealous, one could experience multiple negative thoughts. Recognize this moment and remind yourself to take a step back. Ask yourself the following questions:
- Is this kind of jealousy rational or irrational?
- Is there really something going on or am I the one making things up in my head?
- Who or what is causing this jealousy?
You will probably come to the conclusion that the jealousy is irrational and that your negative feelings are the consequence of the irrational thoughts. Try to remember that thoughts are nothing more than thoughts. They come and they go. When you realize this, you can just let your feelings be what they are. After some time you will notice that the jealousy and the negative thoughts disappear on its own. They will make room for more positive, helping thoughts.
When you find yourself worrying about the situation, you take a chance turning your feelings into jealous actions. One thing you should do to avoid this, is coming in action! You can try to distract yourself with relaxation exercises or do something that brings you joy, like jogging, preparing a healthy meal or meeting up with friends. You will probably see that the jealousy decreases.
Talk about it
There is always a possibility that feelings of jealousy don not disappear, but what may help is to share your feelings with your partner. Make sure that you always talk from an “I-statement” like: ‘I become jealous when I see you are having fun with other women/men. I do not want to forbid you anything, but maybe you could involve me in the conversation the next time?’ You can also say that you find it quite hard to confess your jealousy like ‘I am jealous and I find it hard to say that I am.’
Stop comparing yourself to others
Imagine your partner talking to another woman or man, and imagine you become jealous of it. This is mainly due to the fact that we tend to compare ourselves to others. We pay attention to the success, the beauty and the kindness of others. While on the other hand, we only pay attention to our own flaws and shortcomings. This results in an increase of our insecurities and fears.
What we should do, is look at our capabilities and qualities instead of our flaws, and pay attention to the traits and qualities we do have. What makes you unique and special? Take some time to think this through and write it down in your NiceDay diary!
And remember: the things you might not like about yourself, are the things others can appreciate most.