Let me start this out by completely exposing myself: I used to be the most jealous psychopath on planet earth. Mainly in my first-ever relationship, but also in general. I always felt like I wasn't good enough mixed with a mega-load of trust issues, which didn't add up to much stability and confidence in my life.
Jealousy is a completely normal emotion that arises when there is a discrepancy between where we want to be and where someone else is or when there is a perceived threat to our relationship, status or self-esteem. Regardless, jealousy comes from a place of fear and this is why it is problematic in relationships. Jealousy's main effect is creating assumptions and even delusions in the mind. We assume the other isn't faithful, we assume the other is happier than we are, we assume we are less than someone else. The truth with jealousy is, there is always enough and we never know the full story about the very thing we're jealous of because it wasn't our experience.
Jealousy can sometimes be an indicator that personal barometers aren't being honored. If you're feeling jealous in your relationship, dig deeper into the fear and insecurity. Are you feeling unsafe emotionally? Is your relationship set up with boundaries that are being infringed upon? Are you in a place that feels like it needs more support and you aren't getting it? Any of these reasons are communication points to be had in your relationship to honor your feelings and needs.
Feeling jealous is inevitable at some point in life. It's healthy in the sense that it's normal, as anger is normal. As with any emotion, it's about truly feeling it and letting it move through you so you can come out clearer on the other side.
Tips for dealing with jealousy
1. Get meditative. Ask yourself in a safe, unheated place: "why am I feeling jealousy?" Listen.
2. Get in flow. After you've prompted yourself with the big question and possibly received some answers from within, take a pen to paper and journal it out. Write out why you're so jealous. Write out what triggers jealousy for you. Write all of your fears, both rational and irrational. Write where you think it all came from.
3. Heal. Once you've discovered the origin of your jealousy (be it through meditation, journaling, or traditional therapy), it's time to nurture yourself and the place that feels this way. What feels soothing to the jealousy within you? Some ideas are EFT (tapping), guided imagery meditation, mantra, spending time in nature or asking for the support of a friend. Whatever you do, never shut jealousy out and ignore it - that isn't how we move through. Find a quiet place to feel it and heal it.
These were the steps I took after hitting rock bottom, but I want you to know you don't have to. I am thrilled to tell you that since the beginning of this work in 2014, I have stepped into so much confidence, self-worth and the most trusting partnership I could ever imagine.
Start here. Your awareness and desire to set yourself free is more than half the work. You're worth it.