Did you know that Shakespeare once described jealousy as a “green-eyed monster” that laughed at its victims? Your jealous feelings might not have green eyes, but learning how to stop being jealous still feels like you’re battling a monster. After all, feelings of jealousy can get pretty over-powering if you let them.
Just like a monster, jealousy issues can destroy good relationships. From romantic relationships to professional ones, jealous behavior can amplify your own insecurities so much that you ultimately lash out at people you love or respect. If you want to forge healthy relationships, you must learn how to kick that jealous, green-eyed monster straight to the curb.
Whether you’re a jealous person or you just want to learn how to keep the occasional jealous thoughts at bay, you’ve come to the right place. Today we’re sharing how to deal with jealousy. From how to be less jealous to how to not get jealous at all, we’re covering everything you need to know to break free from your jealous thoughts.
What is Jealousy?
Let’s start from the very beginning: What is jealousy, anyway? Jealousy is an emotion. You experience jealousy when you’re scared of losing something or someone very valuable to you. Most often, you feel threatened that another person will swoop in and take the things you care about.
Is There Jealousy in Business?
Jealousy is most commonly associated with romantic relationships, like being jealous of a partner’s relationship with a friend or coworker. However, jealousy is also incredibly common in the workplace. You can feel jealous of a colleague, fellow knowledge broker or another solopreneur. Regardless of the current relationship you share with another person in business, the basis of jealousy is a fear that they will take over what you’ve built.
What is Envy?
Jealousy is often confused with envy, but the two are actually different. You feel envious when someone else has stuff, relationships or titles that you want. Jealousy happens because you fear someone might take something away from you. Envy is when you’re upset or annoyed that someone already has something you want.
What Causes Feelings of Jealousy?
If we asked every person reading this blog to raise their hand if they’ve ever felt jealous in a current or past relationship, chances are, hands would shoot up across the globe. Jealousy is beyond common in life and business. After all, it’s a natural human emotion! But to get to the heart of how to stop being jealous, you must determine the root cause of those feelings in the first place.
Doctors have identified countless causes of jealousy, the majority of which stem from negative emotions. The most common cause of jealousy is low self-esteem. When you have low self-esteem, you don’t feel confident in yourself. You also doubt your ability to maintain your current relationships or professional roles. You feel insecure in your abilities, your personality or your presence in other people’s lives, so you fear you will be easily replaced.
Low self-esteem and low self-confidence can impact your overall mindset. Instead of feeling proud and self-assured, you feel as though you’re never good enough, and someone might take your place.
Another root cause of jealousy is feeling possessive. You can feel possessive over a person, such as a significant other, or over something you’ve built, like a business or mentorship program. When you become possessive, it’s easy to always feel threatened by other people. This can lead to feelings of jealousy because you fear someone else will steal what you hold dear.
Of course, what’s causing your jealous feelings might differ from the root cause of someone else’s jealous feelings. Like all emotions, jealousy is very specific to the person who’s feeling it. Regardless of its source, one thing remains certain: You must learn how to deal with jealousy.
How Does Jealousy Impact Your Personal and Professional Relationships?
When you leave the green-eyed monster of jealousy free to roam inside you, you ultimately damage your overall well-being. Just like a real 1,000-pound monster, negative emotions like jealousy sit heavy on your mind and your body. Negative feelings warp your perception of yourself and the people around you. They create a toxic mindset and can even lead to physical or mental exhaustion.
When you let your feelings of jealousy go unchecked, your perceived self-worth goes down. You think less of yourself, your abilities and your relationship skills. Jealous feelings plant the seed for bitter emotions, which can break personal and professional relationships. You begin to resent the people you’re jealous of—which can also mean losing trust and respect from those same people.
Even worse, jealous feelings can cause you to act way out of character and say or do things that you typically wouldn’t otherwise. If your resentment wasn’t enough to push personal and professional connections away, this behavior change definitely will. Plus, your overall shift in attitude negatively impacts your mental health, which may cause prolonged anxiety or depression if left untreated.
Not to mention, think about how jealousy can make your partner feel! Like Tony Robbins said, “When jealousy is given full sway in a partnership, neither party thrives.” From romantic relationships to professional partnerships, constant jealousy can be a mental and emotional drain on your partner. Let’s take a deeper look at how jealousy can impact current relationships.
How Jealousy Impacts Personal Relationships
Whether you’re in a new relationship or a decades-old one, the negative effects of jealousy are still the same. No matter how long or strong the relationship, jealousy creates a divide between two people. It makes it impossible for you to fully trust others or believe in yourself.
Jealousy also restricts your capacity for unconditional love: a bond that has no limitations. Consider how feelings of jealousy impact your personal relationships with loved ones, like your significant other or close friends. These relationships in particular should be built on unconditional love.
However, it’s hard to extend this type of love when jealous feelings make you angry, bitter or upset. And when jealousy makes you switch up your attitude and behavior, it damages the trust you’ve built.
Jealous feelings can also dramatically weaken your support system. You may push other people away while trying to process your emotions or lash out due to jealousy. But remember, a solid support system is essential to your well-being, both in life and in business. So, you want to do everything in your power to keep those bonds strong.
How Jealousy Influences Professional Relationships
Similar to how jealous feelings wreak havoc on personal relationships, they are just as damaging to professional relationships—if not even more damaging. Family and friends are more prone to understand your emotions and forgive your jealous feelings. While you can forge close professional relationships, a coworker likely won’t respond as nicely to your jealous outburst as a long-time friend might.
In short, jealousy drives a wedge in professional relationships. When you feel jealous of coworkers or peers in business, you begin to mentally position yourself against them. You develop a “scarcity mindset,” in which you’re convinced there’s not enough success to go around. You begin to resent your peers. Instead of working as teammates who share a common goal, you view your peers as competition fighting for the same prize.
While some competition is healthy in business, you should never isolate yourself from your network because of jealous feelings. Instead of climbing above the pack, your negative emotions will bring you crashing back down to where you started. Negative feelings like jealousy cloud your judgment and ultimately distract from all of the hard work you’ve put into your career.
In just one day, jealous feelings can undo years of blood, sweat and tears. This is why you must learn how to stop being jealous.
Benefits of Breaking Free from Jealous Thoughts
It can be daunting to realize the hard work that goes into battling that green-eyed monster we call jealousy. From improving your self-awareness to identifying your jealousy triggers, you’ll need to do some serious soul-searching. When jealous feelings come creeping in or you feel discouraged, focus on the benefits that come with breaking free of jealous thoughts:
- A more positive and grateful mindset
- An increased sense of freedom in your life
- A boost in self-love and self-esteem
- A better relationship with yourself and those around you
When you focus on these benefits, remember that what you want out of life and relationships doesn’t necessarily reflect what other people want. Some people are focused on buying happiness with money, where other people want to leave a legacy. It doesn’t make sense to waste time being jealous of another person or professional when you don’t even have similar goals. All that matters is that you’re proud of your own growth.
If you want to keep growing, check out these 15 tips.
15 Tips for How to Stop Being Jealous
When jealous thoughts overwhelm you, they can feel impossible to conquer. But don’t don’t give up! Know that it’s possible to break free from these negative emotions. You’ve already taken the first step to eliminate these feelings by searching for how to stop being jealous. Now, regain control over your own life by following these 15 tips.
1. Acknowledge Your Jealousy
First things first, it’s time to acknowledge your jealous feelings. Since you’re already reading this article, you’re probably aware that jealousy is an issue in your life. However, now you must really own up to it.
What does this mean? Stop blaming your circumstances or other people for your jealous thoughts. There’s only one person in control of your thinking habits: you. Instead of believing someone else caused your jealous feelings, take a hard look at your own thoughts and reactions.
We’ll be the first to agree that admitting that you’re jealous can be scary—you’re finally acknowledging that you have a monster you must slay! But by doing so, you own up to your weakness and insecurities. And from here, you can work on those flaws to become a better you.
2. Accept that Relationships Can Create Jealousy (But Don’t Feed into It)
Both professional and romantic relationships share something in common: They are full of passion and pride. You’re passionate about your connection and proud to have forged the partnership. So, it’s not hard to see why you might become possessive over the relationship you’ve built.
However, that’s not to say that jealousy is okay.
At some point, you need to accept that relationships can create jealousy. Anytime you feel that you might lose something you love can create jealousy. However, that does not mean you need to feed into it. Focus on why you feel passion and pride in the relationship, not how you’d feel if you lost it.
3. Learn to Participate in Friendly Competition
If jealousy is getting the best of you, you need to learn how to engage with others without the fear of losing something. Friendly competition can help you learn how to participate in challenging activities without jealousy. For instance, you can compete with a coworker over light-hearted things, like who has the most-decorated work space.
In this friendly competition, no one really loses. But if you’d like, you can set fun parameters for the competition, like the winner gets the best parking spot for the day or a free cup of coffee. These silly competitions will teach you to not value your self-worth based on if you win or lose, but on how you carry yourself throughout the challenge.
4. Work on Your Self-Awareness
Self-awareness is key to recognizing flaws in your thinking patterns. Without self-awareness, you’re unable to identify when jealous feelings come creeping in. You can’t tell when you’re overreacting to a situation, and you can’t gauge how those around you perceive your behavior. Before you know it, your jealous thoughts consume you and ruin the relationship.
Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be this way. There are tons of self-awareness activities to help you recognize emotional and thinking patterns—we’ve even collected a list of 50 self-awareness activities! And, you can complete some of these activities with a partner or as a group to help better your emotional responses together.
5. Be Grateful for Your Own Life
Both in life and business, you can become jealous when you fear someone else will take over something you’ve built, like a relationship or a career. You end up spending so much time obsessing over what you stand to lose that you fail to be grateful for what you currently have. In these cases, remind yourself of all things you have to be grateful for.
If you have a relationship you’re scared to lose, be grateful for that relationship! Stop focusing on what could happen and instead appreciate that you found someone to build a life or a career with. If you have a profession you’re proud of, focus on that! It likely took years to get to where you are now.
Do you really want to waste this present moment on jealousy? Probably not. Focus on the things you’re grateful for instead.
6. Control Your Own Thoughts with Positive Self-Talk
Your mindset controls everything about you, from your emotions to your actions. When you choose to think negative thoughts, you will only generate negative outcomes. When you choose to live in fear, you will only harm your own mental health. It’s time to flip the switch from a negative mindset to a positive mindset.
Learn to encourage a positive mindset with positive self-talk. Focusing on what you’re grateful for, like we mentioned above, is a great way to hone in on the positive aspects of your life. You can also incorporate daily positive affirmations into your routine to boost your self-esteem and overall confidence.
7. Heal Old Wounds
Maybe an old business partner left you high and dry. Maybe a girlfriend or boyfriend was unfaithful in the past. Or maybe you had a sibling you always tried to out-perform when you were younger. We all have old wounds that still sting from time to time. But now, you have to learn to heal those wounds for good.
The issue with old wounds is that they can be literally decades old, yet you still let them control your inner narrative. Because someone hurt you in the past, you allow that to impact how you view your current self. To overcome jealous feelings, you need to acknowledge that how other people have previously treated you does not define who you are now. You have the control to take back those emotions and start living for yourself.
8. Accept and Let Go of the Past
While we’re on the topic of healing old wounds, it’s also important to accept and let go of the past. Who you were 1, 5 or 10 years ago is not who you are now. It’s irresponsible to think, “Well, I’ve always been a jealous person.”
No, the old you was a jealous person. The new you is a growing person who’s learning to boost their self-esteem. If you want to live with no regrets, don’t box yourself in with your past self. Break free of who you were and create a new tomorrow you can be proud of.
9. Learn to Release Pent Up Anger
Once you begin to heal old wounds and let go of the past, you must let go of anger as well. Pent-up anger can bury itself under years of denial and rejection. You might not even know it’s there at all! That is, until something makes you jealous—and suddenly you’re shouting like a maniac.
Jealousy can create so many secondary emotions, from sadness and anxiety to anger and frustration. Just like you need to address the negative emotions that impact your self-esteem, you need to address the angry emotions that can cause you to lash out. Anger will wreak havoc on your personal and professional life if you leave it unchecked.
10. Surround Yourself with Positivity
Feelings of jealousy make it feel like you’re drowning in a sea of negativity: You think you’re not good enough, your relationships aren’t strong enough and others are better than you. When you continue to think these thoughts, you convince yourself that they must be true. You crush your own self-confidence. Not to mention, all of these negative emotions invite other negative people into your space.
When you’re trying to overcome feelings of jealousy, learn to surround yourself with positive people. These people think and behave with a healthy mindset. More importantly, positive people won’t be afraid to call you out when your confidence slips or jealous thoughts roll in.
When you surround yourself with positive people and positive thoughts, you can use the law of attraction to keep those positive vibes coming your way. Surround yourself with positivity, and negative thoughts will have a hard time taking root.
11. Build Strong Relationships (With Others and Yourself)
Earlier, we discussed the role unconditional love plays in romantic and personal partnerships. These types of relationships should be built on a foundation of trust, understanding and respect. But in order to build strong relationships, you need to check your ego at the door and replace self-absorbed ideas with thoughts of the other person. Consider how your jealousy makes them feel.
Likewise, you can’t build better relationships with others until you build a stronger relationship with yourself. Unless you stop beating yourself up and questioning your self-worth, you won’t be able to forge a strong connection with anybody else. Treat yourself to a day of self-care, honest journaling and healing your wounds. When you love yourself unconditionally, you can share that love with other people.
12. Identify, Understand and Release Jealousy Triggers
As you work on your self-awareness, it will become clear that your jealousy has active triggers. Triggers are things that awaken your green-eyed monster and set it storming through your brain. To break free from jealous thoughts, you need to identify, understand and release your jealousy triggers.
For some people, social media can act as a jealousy trigger. For example, you log onto Instagram or Facebook and see another person commenting on your significant other’s photo. Or, you head over to LinkedIn and see a mutual connection networking with your close colleagues. Once you start identifying your triggers, there are a few things you can do:
- Acknowledge the trigger
- Limit your access to the trigger
- Give yourself a 10-minute break before responding to the trigger
- Follow your trigger with a confidence-building affirmation
Before long, you’ll be able to spot your trigger without it bothering you. Soon, those triggers will become distant memories.
13. Don’t Act on Jealousy
Jealous feelings damage your mental health. But when your jealous thoughts are projected onto someone else, like a loved one or coworker, you can begin to impact their mental health as well. All it takes is one negative thought to kickstart negative behaviors that affect everyone involved.
This is why it’s crucial to learn how to not act on your jealousy triggers. Once you understand what triggers you, take a moment to step away from the situation. Try taking a walk, practicing mindfulness or journaling to help process your emotions. Hit the gym, draw a picture or listen to music to distract yourself and get into a better headspace.
Do whatever you have to do to distance yourself from the situation, so you can assess the moment and respond accordingly. Yourself—and your partner—will thank you.
14. Work on Your Insecurities
Low self-esteem is at the core of most jealous feelings. While it’s important to remember that you are enough and deserve what you have, it’s also essential to continue learning and growing. So, if you’re insecure about your skills or the way you communicate, work on those things!
No one’s saying you need to reinvent yourself to stop those jealous thoughts from happening. But sometimes, a self-esteem boost can come in the form of a new skill or improved abilities. The more time you invest into bettering yourself, the less time spent analyzing your flaws. And that means less worrying about when a flaw will be the end of your relationship or career.
15. Become Confident in Your Own Skills
Once you begin to work on your insecurities, learn to become confident in your own skills. There is just one you in this whole entire world and you should be proud of that. Right at this moment, someone else is probably envious of something you have or can do. Why aren’t you just as proud of those qualities?
Surround yourself with positive people who help you shine. Listen to confidence-boosting podcasts, read books about self-esteem and journal about the characteristics you love most about yourself. Practice daily confidence affirmations and believe in them 100%. When you learn to be confident in yourself, your relationships and your career, little things won’t make you jealous anymore.
Beat the Green-Eyed Monster for Good
There’s never been a better time to look that monster of jealousy right in its big green eyes and tell it to hit the road (and never come back). When you do, you can build strong and lasting relationships with the people you care about. And when you’re free of jealousy, you can collaborate and network with peers to pave the way to your dream career. In life and business, you’ll be better off without that monster on your back.
How will you use these tips to combat jealousy?
Text Dean “I beat my green-eyed monster” to 480-400-9019.
Your text will go straight to Dean’s personal cell—and he can’t wait to read about your victory!