How to stop being jealous: 9 tips
Do you feel jealous in a relationship because of your other half’s behavior? Learn how to confront this feeling, how to stop being jealous.
Whether you’re a guy or a girl, jealousy in a relationship can cause many different problems, from paranoia to insecurity and unfounded accusations.
But sometimes we can’t help but feel jealous, especially if someone arises who gets a little more attention from your partner than you think that person deserves.
It’s awful when it feels like the relationship is getting out of control, especially if you can’t find ways to influence the situation.
But no matter what happens, jealousy will never be your ally in love matters.
What is jealousy.
When we are jealous, we fear that our relationship partner may find someone else more attractive, and we fear that she or he will reject us. So jealousy acts as a way to deal with this threat.
We believe that our jealousy will allow us to protect our rights and force our companion to give up his or her infatuation with the other person. Jealousy resembles a strategy we use to figure out what is going wrong in a relationship or to find out how our partner feels.
If you are feeling jealous, ask yourself what you hope to gain from your jealousy.
Like other forms of anxiety, jealousy causes us to focus only on the negative. We interpret our partner’s behavior as reflecting a loss of interest in us or a growing interest in someone else.
Jealousy causes us to draw the wrong conclusions and misinterpret the emotions of those closest to us: “She dressed like that to get other guys’ attention.”
Jealousy can be an adaptive emotion
Jealousy is a universal emotion that affects all people on the planet to varying degrees.
Evolutionary psychologist David Bass has expressed the view that jealousy evolved as a mechanism for protecting personal interests, so the genes of our ancestors who displaced competitors most likely live on in us.
Indeed, it is known that men in ancient times (as well as male lions) killed men and children in a conquered tribe. Jealousy is a way of protecting vital interests.
It could be said that jealousy is a completely natural emotion. Therefore, approaches like “you are neurotic if you are jealous” or “if you are jealous, it means you have low self-esteem” are not always true.
In some cases, jealousy can reflect high self-esteem: “I don’t accept being treated like that.
Jealousy may reflect your higher internal standards
Psychologists have often viewed jealousy as a sign of deep insecurity and personality flaws.
However, it makes sense to look at jealousy as a much more complex emotion. In fact, jealousy may characterize your high standards of monogamy, love, honesty, and sincerity.
You may feel jealous because you want to have a monogamous relationship and you are afraid that you will lose something that is valuable to you.
Some people might argue, “You can’t own the other person.” Of course, this is true, and any relationship is based on freedom. But they are also based on the choices that two free people make.
If your partner freely chooses to leave the party with someone else, then you have good reason to be jealous. We don’t own each other, but we can claim our loyalty to each other.
But if your higher claims are based on honesty, loyalty, and monogamy, jealousy can jeopardize your relationship. It is as if you are trapped. You don’t want to give up your values, but you also don’t want to feel overwhelmed by your jealousy.
How to stop being jealous
There may be a situation where you go into a jealous rage simply because you saw your girlfriend talking to someone else.
But before you unleash a barrage of accusations, stop for a moment and ask yourself some questions about how you feel. Try to figure out why you’re jealous.
Ask yourself questions:
→ Why is my girlfriend talking to this person?
→ Is it unreasonable for them to talk at this time?
→ Has this happened before, and what explanations did the girl provide?
→ Am I jealous because I feel the girl will cheat on me?
→ Am I jealous because this is exactly how I’ve felt when I’ve been cheated on in the past?
→ Does this jealousy stem from something I’ve experienced in the past, or because my girlfriend behaved or said something?
Once you’ve identified the root cause of your jealousy, you’ll have a clearer picture of what you think is going on. This will help you get a new, more objective perspective on the situation.
2. Don’t let your imagination control you
In a situation consisting of a lot of unknown facts, it’s easy to let your imagination run wild and be happy to fill in all the missing information.
The guy who is always working overtime, thanks to his girlfriend’s imagination, can easily turn into a cheater having an affair with his co-worker. A girlfriend who doesn’t pick up the phone is capable of becoming a cheater who is still dating an ex-boyfriend in no time.
However, before you start imagining and recreating fictitious scenarios of likely events, there are two things you can do.
First, find another way to look at what’s going on. The girlfriend’s boyfriend may indeed be working overtime because he just got promoted. And your girlfriend may not have picked up the phone because she was driving with the music on.
If that doesn’t calm your raging imagination, the second thing you can do is try to find another activity to distract you until your other half can give you a reasonable explanation.
To stop being jealous, don’t let your emotions control you and your imagination.
3. Stop comparing yourself to others.
Envy and jealousy are closely related. Therefore, it is very likely that one of the main reasons you are jealous is because the other person has qualities that you feel you lack.
How tempting it is to start comparing yourself to the object of your jealousy. But it is better to stop before you begin to destroy your self-esteem.
Even if you think the other person has positive qualities that you don’t, consider this: of all the smart, funny, good-looking people in your girlfriend’s (boyfriend’s) social circle, why did she (he) choose to be with you?
Regardless of the qualities of the people around your relationship partner, you should have more faith in yourself. You are a wonderful and amazing person, and it’s true.
Explain jealousy to your girlfriend (boyfriend)
It may seem awkward for many people to admit that they are jealous of someone. But sometimes the other half needs to be aware of your attitude in order to smooth things over and not let feelings of jealousy escalate.
You could explain in a calm manner that you have noticed that she or he is spending a lot of time with a certain person and that you would like to know why.
You could ask your girlfriend (boyfriend) to call or text you if she is working late, just to reassure you. You can also arrange to meet your companions’ coworkers or friends to get to know them a little better.
Forming a bond with your lovers’ circle of friends often helps.
5. Feelings of jealousy are different from jealous behavior
Just as there is a difference between feelings of anger and hostile actions, there is a difference between feelings of jealousy and jealous behavior.
To stop being jealous, it is important to understand that your relationship is likely being jeopardized by your jealous behavior. This includes constant accusations, the desire for reassurance and control, resentment, and acts of revenge.
Stop and tell yourself, “I know I’m feeling jealous, but I don’t need to act accordingly.”
Notice that this feeling is within you. But you have a choice: to follow its manifestation and submit to its will or not.
Which choice would be in your best interest?
6. Accept your jealousy and watch the feeling.
When you notice that you feel jealous, take a few minutes out of your day, breathe slowly, and observe your thoughts and feelings.
Recognize that jealousy-soaked thoughts and reality are not the same thing. You may think that your partner is interested in someone else, but that doesn’t mean that’s how it really is.
Note that your feelings of anger and anxiety may increase as you consciously begin to observe your experiences.
Accept the fact that you have developed jealousy. You do not need to get rid of this feeling. Being aware of the emotion and observing it will often lead to a lessening of the resulting feeling.
7. Recognize that uncertainty is part of the relationship.
Jealousy requires reassurance: “I want to know for sure that she’s not interested in him.” Or, “I want to know for sure that we won’t break up.”
But uncertainty is part of life, and we have to learn to accept it. Uncertainty is one of those limitations that we can do nothing about.
You can never know for sure that your partner won’t leave you. But if you blame, demand and retaliate, you can turn the idea of the collapse of your relationship into a reality with your own hands.
8. Examine your beliefs about the relationship
How do you stop being jealous? To do this, understand that your jealousy may be fueled by unrealistic ideas about the relationship.
These may include beliefs that your partner’s past relationships are a threat to your love. Or you may believe that “My girlfriend (boyfriend) should never be attracted to anyone else.” You may also convince yourself that your emotions (jealousy and anxiety) are an indicator that there is a problem in the relationship.
This is what is called “emotional reasoning,” which is often a very poor way to make decisions.
Often your beliefs about relationships are influenced by your experiences as a child or by past relationships.
If your parents went through a difficult divorce process, you may be more inclined to believe it will happen again to you. Or you may have been betrayed in a recent relationship, and now you believe that your current relationship may be a repeat of those events.
You may also believe that you have nothing to offer the other person – who would want to be with you? If your jealousy is based on such a belief, then it is very important for you to refute that idea.
For example, one woman believed that she was lacking in virtues. But when asked what she would like to see in an ideal man, she replied: intelligence, decency, emotional intimacy, creative thinking, humor, a variety of interests, and suddenly she realized that she was describing herself. If she was such an empty personality, why would she see herself as the ideal partner?
9. Use effective communication skills
You don’t need to rely on jealousy to make your relationship safer.
To stop being jealous, you should use more effective behavior. This means becoming more helpful to each other:
→ Pay attention when your partner does something positive.
→ Praise each other and try to refrain from criticism, sarcasm, and contempt.
→ Always have a dialogue with each other and discuss anything that bothers you.
→ Do the pleasant and simple things you expect each other to do: cook a meal together, talk about your other half’s work.
Jealousy rarely has a positive effect on a relationship. Practicing effective communication is a much better alternative.
How to stop being jealous of your girlfriend: a detailed guide
Many people in a relationship regularly wonder how to stop being jealous and winding themselves up in order to find harmony with their partner. However, not everyone manages to find the right answer.
Some succumb to this toxic feeling and have regular domestic scandals that ruin the once happy union. Others begin to monitor their partner and constantly supervise him, reminiscent of the staff of the repressive authorities.
Both options, of course, do not suit us, because a healthy relationship – it is love and trust. Sometimes you can’t get away from jealousy, but it must not turn into complete destructiveness.
Now we’re going to look at what the main causes of jealousy are, and what to do about it. If you think you need to work in this area, be sure to take a look at our recommendations.
Why are we jealous?
Before we deal with ways to overcome this feeling, we need to understand why we succumb to jealousy in the first place. To do this, here is the opinion of the American psychologist Seth Meyers, who has written more than one work on family psychology.
1 You are insecure.
According to Meyers, jealousy often occurs in people with low self-esteem who may feel extremely insecure about their relationships. They regularly think that they are not good enough for their partner, so they feel like they might be cheated on.
Obviously, this is where you need to work on your self-esteem and become more confident. After all, this kind of self-positioning is clearly not going to do any good.
2 You want to be in control all the time
Some people have a mania to control everything, which turns into despotism, which prevents the construction of healthy relationships. Psychologist believes that this may be due to troubling experiences in adolescence, which laid the thought of “you can not trust anyone.
This is where the overwhelming need to monitor everything, check everything, and know everything comes from. In essence, it is a fear of other people’s freedom and a kind of protest against it.
3 You are too attached to your girlfriend.
There is also sometimes nothing good in excessive attachment. It coexists with unreasonable jealousy resulting from fear of separation. There is also the intrusion into the life of a partner, when he is forbidden to meet with friends, spend time apart and just do something with his own hands.
This kind of jealousy also destroys relationships, and should definitely be dealt with.
4 You have a type of obsessive thinking
In other words, you suffer from obsessive thoughts that may be focused on your girlfriend’s potential cheating. Such thoughts can arise for no reason or after the slightest triggers, like coming home late after work.
Moreover, people with obsessive thoughts tend to make up certain events themselves and replay the same episodes in their minds, experiencing more and more.
Thus, anxious thoughts are cultivated here by themselves and there is no real reason to worry, in fact.
In addition, jealousy often occurs in people with paranoid states. In both cases, it is best to see a therapist or psychologist and sort out your problems.
5 You have a significant reason for jealousy
It’s different when you have a real reason to be jealous. For example, jealousy can provoke flirting on social media, which you accidentally stumbled upon from your girlfriend, or some other reason to be nervous.
Nevertheless, there is no need to jump to conclusions. First of all, you need to sort everything out and talk calmly.
What to do with jealousy?
It’s time to move on to the most important part of our guide. In it we will figure out how to stop being jealous of your wife or girlfriend and fix the relationship. The tips above have been borrowed from Robert Leahy, a psychology doctor and professor at Yale University.
1 Analyze Your Thoughts
When you realize that your jealousy is taking on destructive forms, it’s time to resort to healthy analysis. Stop, calm down, and look at the problem holistically.
Do you really have a good reason for jealousy, or is it just unfounded fears. After all, if you suspect your girlfriend is into someone, it doesn’t mean she is. Don’t forget that thoughts and reality are two different things.
2 Embrace your emotions.
If a person is constantly dwelling on negative thoughts-it will increase their anxiety and growing anger. To avoid all this, you need to accept your emotions and let them exist.
You don’t have to get rid of these experiences. It’s best to approach them consciously, which should help you deal with them.
3 Understand that uncertainty in a relationship is normal.
Our whole life is one big uncertainty, so asking your girlfriend for a clear answer to the question “will we always be together” is not a good idea.
There is nothing we can do about uncertainty, no matter how hard we try and what vows we say at the altar. One thing is certain, however. Accusations, suspicions, and other torments from your partner about fidelity can bring the end of your relationship closer.
4 Start Doing Yourself
In order to be less distracted by anxious thoughts, try taking care of yourself. For example, start jogging, find a hobby, or try meditation altogether. At some point, you’ll realize that time away from your partner is a perfectly normal situation. Once you get into it, you’ll be able to miss and share the experiences you’ve gained from doing your own thing.
Well, and exercising will make you healthier and more visually appealing, and that will only strengthen your relationship.
5 Don’t forget about trust.
The most effective cure for jealousy is trusting communication. If you’re having trust issues, talk to your girlfriend about it quietly. Share your thoughts and worries with her. Sometimes our partners may not even realize that we are jealous. So it is likely that when they find out about it, they will say, “Well, what are you, or what? I don’t need anyone but you!”
6 Be grateful.
In fact, in small doses, jealousy can even strengthen a relationship. We are against destructive jealousy, which makes it impossible to exist normally in a union with the person you love.
Each partner should be grateful that they have made this particular life choice. After all, there are so many people in the world with whom you can have a relationship, but you chose to be together and remain faithful. That deserves gratitude.
7 Accept your circumstances and think about what to do next
If you have real reasons to be jealous and confirmed facts that make you question your girlfriend’s fidelity, try to approach it with acceptance. The best thing to do is to try to get to the bottom of the problem and work on solving it. That is, think about what to do with your relationship.
Be sure to talk to the girl, share your feelings, understand yourself, whether you can continue to be with her after this or that case.
Once again, note that if your problem is rooted in your childhood, see a specialist. You don’t have to suppress jealousy, you need to work with it.