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10 ways your jealousy might be sabotaging your own happiness

Published by Business Insider on Thu, 08 Nov 2018

Jealousy, otherwise known as that irritating green-eyed monster, is a complex human emotion. Unlike happiness and angeremotions you can easily attribute to a rhyme or reasonjealousy is a "gut reaction in your emotional/evaluative system" that can fester long before you even realize it's there, according to a 2017 study published in the journal Frontiers In Psychology. No one sets out to be envious. It just sort of happens. You might not always know the cause of or be able to rationalize the envy, but one thing's for surejealousy is not a positive emotion, and the ways your jealousy can sabotage your own happiness are striking.Jealousy can make you feel insecure in your relationship.The more you find yourself wanting, the more you subject yourself to the comparison of other people who have whatever it is you covet. When you aren't satisfied with what you already own, when you aren't appreciative of the people in your life, or are constantly searching for the latest and greatest, these fantastical images of a life someone else is living can result in comparison, which will eventually translate into self-criticism, self-doubt, and insecurity. This can especially become volatile when these emotions come through in romantic relationships. "Jealousy is an indication of an insecurity in a relationshipsometimes we don't feel 'good enough,'" therapist and co-creator of Viva Wellness, Jor-El Caraballo told INSIDER. "If you continue to let jealousy run your relationship it's likely it will only exacerbate those feelings of insecurity, chipping away at your self-esteem even more over time. This can make the jealousy worsen over time and deteriorate your own confidence in your ability to be a balanced partner." You're never satisfied with who you are, or what you have.At the heart of it, jealousy sparks from desire, a deep-rooted yearning to be more, or have more. But if you're constantly fixated on the upgrade, on the promotion, on the weight loss, and lose sight of the here and now, it becomes almost impossible to feel 100% satisfied with who you are, and what you already have."If not properly worked through, [jealousy] becomes a recipe for self-criticism, disapproval, and negation," said Michael Alcee, Ph.D., a clinical psychologist based in Tarrytown, New York. "It becomes a back-door way of saying that you aren't worthy as you are, and if only, you had or did or were this other thing would you be complete." Jealousy can spiral into perfectionism, which can be equally as unhealthy."Jealousy can spur the natural human desire for perfection and omnipotence, wanting to be and have it all," Alcee added. "Lovely in theory, in practice, this becomes nearly impossible to navigate without distortions."It can be a difficult concept for some to grasp, but Alcee explained that human beings do have limitations and constraints, and there is no one-size-fits-all definition of what it is to be perfect."It is the story of the Garden again, where we all become jealous of that which isn't meant for us and want to know more about why."See the rest of the story at Business Insider
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