Of all the emotions that can be used to create art–joy, sadness, anger, whatever–the best one, I think, is jealousy. Thanks to this particular emotion, we have Beyonce’s Lemonade. Shakespeare’s entire oeuvre, basically. And, of course, Nick Jonas’ timeless classic of the titular theme, “Jealous.”
But jealousy, while objectively an excellent crafting device for books and paintings and songs that are meant to represent the complexity of the human condition when confronted with a lover who is possibly being led astray, is not a very good thing to feel yourself. In fact, it is one of the worst emotions that one can feel, I think–that nebulous, burning mixture of anxiety, anger, and sadness, all compressed into a hard little cone of shame in the pit of your stomach. It’s a feeling that can make all thoughts of rational behavior seem suddenly impossible.
So, if you’re feeling jealous, you can channel this emotion into a piece of art that, much like Nick Jonas’ “Jealous,” will one day become one of the most hallowed works of all time. Otherwise, check out these easy ways to stop being so freaking jealous of your SO all the time:
Don't Ignore ItJealousy isn't fun, but it is totally normal--so, you shouldn't feel like you have to tamp down your emotions whenever feelings of envy arise. Even if it isn't a totally rational feeling of jealousy (which I'll get to in a second) trying to get rid of it through repression isn't going to do you any good. Acknowledge that you're jealous, try to figure out what you can do about it, then move on. Image source: iStock
Remember That Jealousy Doesn't Automatically Mean That Something Is Going OnShould you trust your instincts? Absolutely. But think about all the times in your life that you've been worried about something that you felt sure was going to ruin everything--school, a relationship, your life, whatever--that ended up being totally fine. Sure, sometimes your own jealousy can tip you off to something that's not quite right, but most of the time it's just a combination of imagination and insecurity. Whatever the case is, you should talk to your S.O. about it (remember that you don't want to let your jealousy fester), but don't decide that just because you feel jealous, this means that the end of your relationship is nigh. Image source: iStock
Talk About It, But Don't Act On ItFeeling jealous? Talk to your partner about it, but please, please, don't turn all passive aggressive and expect them to pick up on what you're feeling and why you're feeling that way--you know, like taking a long time to respond to texts, making the responses short when you do, and making "K" and "It's fine" the most common phrases in your vernacular. Chances are good that they'll have no clue what's going on at all, especially if they're a guy. So, please just try to be open about your feelings. It's not easy, but it's definitely more beneficial than throwing out "k's" and expecting that to communicate all of your feelings. Image source: iStock
Try To Identify What's Actually Making You JealousA lot of the time, feeling jealousy towards one small-ish thing is actually a reaction to something else that you aren't as willing to acknowledge. So, try to figure out if there's something more serious that's been going on for a while that could be manifesting itself in this one bout of jealousy. It's possible that they've been distant for a while, or just, like, unsatisfactory overall as a boyfriend or girlfriend, so you're looking for something to pin your dissatisfaction upon. Image source: iStock
Don't Let Your Jealousy Control Yourself Or OthersJealousy can feel totally consuming, but it doesn't have to be. Instead, just try to accept that uncertainty is going to be a part of pretty much every relationship. You don't want to know too little, obviously (never knowing where your partner is at all is a big ol' red flag), but too much information won't help you either. So, try and trust your partner, not blindly, but as well as you can. Image source: iStock
Exclude Yourself From The NarrativeBasically, don't self-flagellate. If you suspect that your boyfriend has been flirting with a girl in his study group for his geometry class, but don't spend hours lurking her Instagram to find evidence. If your girlfriend has a coworker that you're pretty sure is into her, don't show up as a "surprise. Don't read anyone's texts. Will you see something? It's possible, but neither of these things will make you feel good at all. You should definitely talk to your S.O. in situations like this, but anything beyond that is basically just embedding yourself further in your jealousy. Image source: iStock
Don't Use Past Relationships As A Template For This OneIf your ex cheated on you, or just kind of treated you poorly when you were with them, it can be easy to assume that any similarities in personality and/or circumstance between your ex and new bae is a sign of something awful. Most of the time, it really, really isn't. This doesn't mean that your ex isn't influential towards your personality and feelings towards people today--it's totally possible that they are--but you also need to remember that you aren't dating your ex anymore. Don't lump in their actions with someone else's. Image source: iStock
Are you a jealous person? Do you have any good tips for beating jealousy? Let us know in the comments!