Why Am I So Jealous and How Can I Stop?By Dr. Margaret Paul
January 07, 2019
You can heal your jealousy! Discover the underlying cause and how to heal it.
“My husband has become friends with the woman next door and when he talks with her, I feel crazy with jealousy. I don’t think it’s right that he’s friends with her. He knows it upsets me but he keeps doing it anyway. How can I get him to care more about how I feel?”
I can’t even begin to count how often both men and women say something similar to me. Jealousy is often a major source of conflict in relationships.
The Cause of Jealousy
Jealousy comes from the fear that you are not good enough – not attractive enough, not smart enough, not successful enough – or from the false belief that there is something essentially wrong with you.
Many of us grew up believing that we were not good enough. When we didn’t receive the love we needed from our parents or other caregivers, we may have falsely concluded that it was because there was something wrong with us, rather than because they just didn’t know how to be loving. We all absorbed many false beliefs about our adequacy and lovability from our parents, peers, teachers, religious leaders, and the media.
Most of us didn’t receive mirroring for our beautiful true soul self – the spark of God-which-is-love within each of us. Our parents and others projected onto us their judgments of themselves, so they couldn’t see and value us. If you had been seen and deeply valued and loved for who you really are in your soul essence, you would deeply value yourself and you would know why your partner loves you.
The Path To Healing
Healing occurs when you learn to see who you really are in your beautiful soul, rather than defining yourself by your looks and achievements. And as long as you make others responsible for defining your self-worth, you will feel threatened when your partner gives attention to someone else.
Try this exercise:
Sit in a beautiful place out in nature, or imagine being there. If you can’t be in actual nature, use your imagination to smell the flowers or the trees or the ocean.
Imagine an older, wiser part of yourself, your higher self. Imagine that you are with your older wiser self in the beautiful place in nature.
Imagine that you can see yourself as a little child through the eyes of your older wiser self, before you decided that you were not good enough. Who is this child?
Write down the words that come to mind, such as playful, kind, sensitive, caring, intuitive, generous, outgoing, fun-loving, sweet, funny, smart, giving, loving, quiet, thoughtful, lovable, intense, curious, honest, bright-eyed. Write whatever words pop into your mind.
- Tune inside and see that these beautiful qualities are still within, but they might have been squashed down by the experiences you had growing up, and by the ego wounded part of you who decided that who you really are in your soul essence isn’t good enough.
If you had a child who was just like you were as a child, how would you treat him or her?
Now think about how you treat yourself. Are you giving yourself the love, attention and caring you need inside, or are you abandoning yourself with your self-judgments? Are you numbing out your feelings with various addictions and are you making your partner or others responsible for your feelings of safety, worth and lovability?
Your inner child – your soul essence – is your feeling self, and lets you know through feelings whether you are loving yourself or abandoning yourself. When you feel jealous, your inner child is letting you know that you are abandoning yourself in various ways.
Loving Yourself Heals Jealousy
When you decide to learn to love yourself rather than judge yourself and abandon your feelings, you will no longer feel jealous. When you learn to see and value yourself, you will know why your partner loves you. You will be able to stop trying to control your partner into giving you what you haven’t been giving yourself, and you will be able to feel your partner’s love for you, as well as your love for your partner. You will find yourself no longer competing with others for your partner’s attention.
When you learn to treat yourself as someone you love, jealousy will no longer be a problem for you!
Join Dr. Margaret Paul for her 30-Day at-home Course: "Love Yourself: An Inner Bonding Experience to Heal Anxiety, Depression, Shame, Addictions and Relationships."
Join IBVillage to connect with others and receive compassionate help and support for learning to love yourself.
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What nurtures you? Do you feel nurtured by being out in nature? By doing something creative? By sitting quietly and listening to music or reading or watching a movie? By being with caring friends? By being physically active - hiking, playing a sport, or gardening? By meditating, journaling, practicing Inner Bonding? By playing fun games? By playing a musical instrument? Today, be sure to create balance in your life by nurturing yourself.
By Dr. Margaret Paul