There are times when jealousy affects the best among us. However, it is not always perceived the same. Different people may experience or display jealousy in contrasting fashion, owing largely to their personality types. But regardless, you need to understand that whether you believe being jealous is justified or not, it eventually ends up becoming a destructive influence, and will negatively affect your wellbeing.
But Just What Is Jealousy?
In its simplest form, jealously can be defined as an emotion, or combination of emotions that manifest as either thought, actions or emotional feelings. It is believed that most people will experience feelings of jealousy at one point or another in their lives, and while the reasons for jealousy are common among all walks of life, the expressions can vary significantly.
How To Identify If You Suffer From Jealousy
The appearance of jealousy may not always be obvious from an outside perspective, but traits are present that you would be able to identify. These include:
• You Snoop: this can include prying into private mail or email, screening phone calls, or just needing to know where your significant other or loved one is at all times. This can also include friends, who may be in contact with others you despise, causing you to feel left out.
• Pettiness: if you find yourself picking arguments for tiny things, and disguising it as “telling the truth”, this is one of the signs of jealousy. On a subliminal level, the goal is to make the other person feel some of the emotions you are experiencing, but sugar coating it at the same time.
• You Constantly Experience Doubts And Need Reassurance: eventually, a point is reached when your significant other/friend stops entertaining outbursts of jealously, and this is when things take a new level. You may find yourself outright questioning that person if they still care about you, but are never convinced enough to listen to the reassurances. This could be a slippery slide down to a very dark place, so try not to have your feelings of jealousy get this bad.
• Insincerity: jealously does not just stem from the belief that your partner is hiding an external relationship, but can also be triggered when the other person is uplifted. This can be as a result of a promotion, an extravagant gift from a relative, or anything that make the other person happy. You may say “congratulations” or “I’m happy for you”, but your true feelings show through as insincerity.
• You Humiliate In Public: this is extremely bad, and may include snarky remarks like “you’re checking that guy/girl out” and more. These public displays of humiliation that embarrasses your companion stem from jealousy, or bringing up past failures/ mistakes.
Why Do Your Experience Jealousy?
Most of the causes of jealousy are common; meaning that if you experience it, the triggers are the same, regardless of cultural differences. These commonly include:
• Insecurity: insecurity often does not just randomly appear , but develops slowly over a relationship. For example, if you notice your significant other publicly checking out other people, you develop some feelings of insecurity. Likewise, being uncomfortable with who you are, and then equating it with the fact that you’re not good enough for your partner can further insecurity.
• Fear: primarily the fear that your partner will leave you for someone better, may cause you to lash out and more publicly display jealousy. This could be the worst possible way to handle things, however, as lashing out due to fear will only serve to worsen things.
• Competition: completion in a relationship is very common, even though you might like to believe that one person uplifts another. There is a constant battle on the low to see who is the “better” person in the relationship, which may lead to development of jealousy in at least one person. Not all competition is healthy competition, as we were taught in school.
Why Jealousy Is A Matter You Should be Concerned With
It is believed that a little jealousy is good, as it shows that you have “interest” in your significant other, but this is not really the case. In fact, we all experience jealousy- that is a fact. But there are significant differences in the way we express our jealousy.
In fact, according to the Myers-Briggs Personality test (MBTI), differences in our personality type determine to a large extent the way we deal with jealousy. This is why some people seem unbothered by jealousy, or why some people do not see why their partner is acting out. On the other hand, some people experience a larger degree of extroverted emotional feelings than others, whereby they wear their emotions as a proud badge of honor.
At the end of it all, what you should be concerned with is the way jealousy can alter your relationship. You can use it productively to change the way you handle your emotions, or let it run amok like wildfire and cause destruction. Your choice.
How To Address Your Jealousy
• Shift Your Point of View (POV): sometimes taking a step back and trying to visualize if you’re being fair can help you control your outbursts. It doesn’t work for everyone, but is worth a shot.
• Remind Yourself That You’re Worth It: if you feel undervalued, or underappreciated, you need to remind yourself that there are things you bring that no one else has to offer. Then, if you are 100% sure you are not appreciated, leave a relationship where you are often belittled.
• Practice Mindfulness: meditation can help you develop appreciation for the present, and boost self-control as well. This is a useful tool in minimizing jealous outbursts.
• Seek Support When All Else Fails: talk to a trusted friend, or a professional in an effort to get a foreign perspective. This can help you judge if your jealousy is unwarranted.
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