The Culprit: Doubt and Insecurity
My son was watching cartoons one morning while I was getting his stuff together for kindergarten that day. I heard some deep wisdom from a cartoon as I got his snack put together. “Jealousy is a trick we play on ourselves,” (Spirit Rangers).
When I work with clients that struggle with jealousy, we can always tie the heart of the issue back to their self-doubt and insecurity. Self-doubt and insecurity are our personal problems that we need to address in life. They are not anyone else's responsibility. Many try to side-step this responsibility and we play the What-If Game. We don’t realize it at first but we’re feeding jealousy and it will grow fast.
‘What if my partner is with someone else or wants to be with someone else?’ ‘What if a friend prefers others over me?’ ‘What if I don’t matter?’ ‘What if the boss/teacher likes so and so better than me?’ 'What if my teammates don't think I'm very good.'
The questions are endless in this game and they really wreak havoc on our mental health.
What is key, we don’t know if any of it is true. The other surprising thing this game does if we play it long enough, it becomes our reality even if it’s not real. We become obsessed with these jealous thoughts. We slowly begin to believe that some are true. We begin to treat our partner, family, co-workers, and friends poorly because we want to get back at them. We cheat on them, lie, sabotage their efforts, manipulate things, spread gossip, etc…. If someone suspects their partner is cheating on them, they are more inclined to cheat themselves.
Stop playing the What-If Game.
Our jealousy creates a mess to our relationships because we’ve tricked ourselves into believing some of our many What-If's. We’ve tricked ourselves because we’ve played What-If instead of addressing our doubts and insecurities. Address your doubts and insecurities and build confidence before we irreparably damage all our relationships with jealousy.