Why jealousy can be good for you and your relationship.
"The jealous are troublesome to others, but a torment to themselves"- William Penn.
Dwelling in that dark place of jealousy is lonely, painful and can be destructive to the very person you want to keep close. The pits of the green monster is isolating and not a
place to dwell for long.
Jealousy can come up in many areas of life, but it is most debilitating when experienced in relationships. Jealousy, that feeling that can take you into a spiral of suspicion, low self esteem, potentially feeling really angry and creating a sense of isolation.
Jealousy can arise from a real or perceived event. Either you witness your partner with another person that triggers your jealousy or you create a scenario in your head that your partner is experiencing greater pleasure or happiness from another person.
Jealousy is no fun, it closes down your life view, it shuts down your thinking, it restricts access to your heart and limits your ability to be confident.
It feels like terrible. It triggers your survival pathway in your brain, it sends off a heap of hormones to make your panic and shuts down your thinking.
What if the emotion of jealousy, could become your light, your pathway to consciousness, to self love and more?
Firstly, I'm going to own up to having entertained that green monster. I hit a real low and I was astonished by my thinking. I thought I was more robust than what I was experiencing. I ebbed and flowed from being ok to falling into despair.
I experienced deep worry over my feelings of jealousy, I doubted his words, his actions and combed his phone for evidence of my belief.
Jealousy can be a gift to help you become resilient and build upon your self esteem. It can deepen connection, it can also enliven your passion for each other.
By taking the time to kindly, gently and lovingly inspect the thoughts, beliefs and feelings associated with jealousy, you can lessen the hold of jealousy on your life, this is powerful for you and your partner.
How can you make jealousy become your friend and not your enemy?
Here are some strategies to support you to move out of jealousy & into love:
So your partner may be out with a female friend or he's chatting to a girl at a party, or he is out with another partner if in a Polyamorous relationship.
Taking time out to go and be with a good friend and talk it out with the intention of laughing and letting go of this emotion is powerful. Go for a run, a dance, indulge in something you love to get your endorphins moving and feeling less blue.
Be in your vulnerability:
Own it and state how you are feeling to your partner. Your partner may not be aware of how you are feeling. By revealing your fear and vulnerability rather than your anger, you are more likely going to open up a compassionate conversation. He hasn't MADE you feel this way, you are experiencing feelings of jealousy and it is overwhelming and possibly scary. Have a conversation with this person and be aware of taming the monster while you speak. Breathe!
Is this a signal that your passion needs to be fired up?
It can be very freeing to own up to your jealousy and fears and employ a state of curiosity around the situation.
If you employ a heart of curiosity and your intention is to bring the two of you closer, you might find that this situation actually deepens your love and passion for each other.
Your partner may be longing for something that is missing in the relationship, isn't it better to know what that is, than deny it exists? It is likely that you may be having similar desires. Talking openly about your needs is important, good things come from calm, curious, honest conversations.
What responsibility am I taking towards our connection in the relationship, what responsibility are we taking towards our fun in the relationship etc...
Restating the boundaries:
Maybe boundaries have been crossed or they have changed. If so, this is an opportunity to clarify each others needs to feel safe and nurtured in the relationship. Clarify what is ok and not ok. These difficult times, are often the gold for growth.
If handled with care, strong moments of jealousy like other issues in a relationship, can be the path to greater connection by forcing you both to understand each other more.
Identify your fears:
What hurtful thoughts are you telling yourself and believing? I like using this one in life!
Approach yourself with care and kindness. Hold yourself gently and allow space to go deeper into the pain. Find out, what are you choosing to believe?
Perhaps you are having thoughts such as:
"I'm not as beautiful as...."
"He/She is spending more time with X because X is.....(more interesting, more fun, wiser, more gorgeous, bigger boobs, more feminine etc...)"
"She/he is into X more than me".
"She/he is going to leave me".
Whilst it can be painful, diving into the darkness with the intention of identifying truth is liberating.
Finding the light!
Is this really true?
Ask yourself if this is really true or are you worrying your pretty head off?
Can I be really sure this is true?
Maybe X is gorgeous, maybe X is interesting. If so, how I am feeling towards my sense of sensuality, or body image, or dedication to my interests, what passions am I denying? Am I happy with myself in the world? Keep asking yourself good questions.
Jealousy can be a message from our self worth that we need to send the love our way.
The truth is we are all unique and good at something. There is no one in the world like you and your are beautiful. Just as it is true that this other person is also unique and beautiful in their own way, what ever you think, of do can not change that truth. You need to accept that there are fascinating creatures out there and always will be and you are likely to be one of them. So remind yourself that you are special.
Becoming friends with your thoughts:
So jealousy, might be a regular appearance in your world. If so, when it comes knocking at your door, greet it and acknowledge it's presence, without getting attached to it.
1. You can say, "Oh hello jealousy have you come to annoy me again, you can leave now, I have nothing to worry about."
2. We have hundreds of thoughts every hour. They are just thoughts, just as "I am a lemon" is a thought.
Try saying"I'm having the thought that...." separates you from your thoughts and gives power back to your presence.
By employing this sentence you gain a sense that you are the one running the thought show and you can alter these thoughts.
The reality is your partner and you have history together or some kind of connection and that is likely to be deeper than what is occurring in this moment. Keep a grip on reality, remind yourself of why the two of you are together.
Face the green monster:
Lastly, no relationship is ever dead lock, fail proof, absolutely bound. Even if you have made a commitment to each other, the reality is you can never be sure your relationship won't end. So facing your own inner monster is a transformative experience.
Facing the fear that he or she may leave you is worth dipping your toe into that pool, to see if you can swim!
Actually going into the process of facing the reality of being alone is worth doing. What if these fears were true, and your relationship end? It probably wont, but inquiring into that thought helps to give you access to your own capacity to survive regardless of what might happen.
Should X leave you, you will survive. Things will crumble, hearts will hurt, but you will heal and survive. You can experience life, friends, joy without this person; find evidence in the past that this is true. Remind yourself of your gifts, be kind to yourself.
Wishing you love on your journey XX