How to Be the Right Kind of Jealous

We all know what jealousy can lead to. Whether it’s a quiet, spiteful thought about someone’s new iPhone or a full blown investigation into your current partner’s ex-girlfriend’s Facebook photos, anger, resentment, annoyance, and rash and uncharacteristic actions can all be influenced by this one emotion.

This is why it’s so important that we learn to weed out these green monsters before they allow us to succumb to extreme emotional states and actions. Here are some tips…

Don’t compare yourself to others —

We are conditioned to believe that a certain type of beauty, personality, or possession is preferable to others. As a result, when we see the superlatives of these aspects, many of us tend to get jealous because comparatively, we do not have what they suggest might make us likable or happy. Try looking at it from a different perspective. Compare yourself to you. How far have you come since last year, five years ago, ten? You’ve probably come a long way, so enjoy… and always celebrate milestones.

Be confident in yourself —

Insecurity causes feelings of jealousy to flourish. You can either work on developing the particular area in your life that you feel deficient in, or you can change the way you think about yourself. Try thinking about the things you do great, before circling in on what you lack. When you find something you love about yourself, no one can take that away.

Think positive —

Next time you see someone who has something you desire, try re-calibrating those feelings of jealousy into something more positive. It may be something as simple as looking at someone and stopping the thought process at “She has beautiful eyes” instead of “I wish my eyes were like hers.”

Acknowledge your self-worth —

Even if you think it’s not true, take a moment to acknowledge that you are enough right now. It is in this body, in this mind that you absolutely can make the decision to go for what you want in life and be the person you want to be.

Kena DeLong lives, surfs, and writes in Santa Cruz, California.

Illustration credit: Juliet Romano.

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