Here’s something we don’t talk about all too much: Jealousy.
As mental health, depression and anxiety become more vogue (even for men!) one thing we still shy away from as a population is feelings of insecurity.
I am pleased to see that men are opening up about their struggles; but it still comes with the caveat of: “I’m struggling now BECAUSE I’ve been so strong for so long”, which to me still feels a little bit like toxic masculinity. So, to conclude: this is good but we could still do a whole lot better.
Let’s talk about men. but REALLY talk about them. Who here ever wonders if they\’re good enough for their partner? Who here wonders if they’d find someone else if their relationship fell through? And who here feels deeply insecure but is too afraid to mention it through fear of seeming desperate, clingy and needy and altogether ‘un-manly’? Yeah, trust me. You’re not on your own.
Jealousy is commonly described as a belief that your significant others will replace you as the most important person in their life. This might be romantically, with their time (e.g. their work gets in the way), or even with children. The list goes on but the root is the same: Your number 1 spot is being threatened, and you do not like this.
That’s okay, and I think that makes sense. Evolutionarily speaking you should want to be their number 1! Number 1 means safety, survival, procreation…the list goes on. However, how is it for you? Always being so concerned? Always so worried and hypervigilant? What lengths have you gone to to try and secure your top spot? Do you check on them? Maybe even read their phone? Do you row about what clothes they are going to wear of who they’re going to see? If this sounds like you – please read on. Your partner deserves better than this and you deserve better than this as well.
So, we know that jealousy is common, we know that it serves a function, and we also know its destructive. So why does it persist? Well, as with many things it relates really to your level of self worth. You would not fear that every person your partner talks to is going to replace you if only you had a bit more belief in yourself.
Imagine believing that they’d chose you over all those other men that chat to her in bars. Imagine for a second she’s excited to see you when she comes home – not simply doing it out of politeness. Imagine for a second she thinks of you under the sheets, instead of dreaming of those steamy nights spent with her exes. I know it feels like a long way off, but confidence can be learned.
The truth is that confidence is sexy. And the more you communicate from a place of insecurity, the more you are inadvertently fulfilling your own prophecy… So, you need to start at least acting as though you believe in yourself more just to get the ball rolling.
3 Tips For Beating Jealousy
Step 1: Remember Your Strengths
How do we do that? Well, step one is to list all your strengths. You’re strong. You’re handsome. Other people fancy you/ have fancied you/ will fancy you again. You are hard working and you are a catch. You are funny and interesting and you have a sensitive side. Aren’t these the ideals for most women? You need to recognise that you have all these and wear them proudly as if a badge. Know you’re worth, embody it and remind yourself of it every time your brain plays that familiar “she’s gonna leave you as you’re nothing on her ex” monologue.
What’s more: she chose you. She had other suitors! Bucket of them. She could of picked any other guy in that bar but she didn’t. She chose you. You’re the one that gave her tingles. You’re the one that charmed your way to her; you’re the one she’s dreaming of. YOU. You need to look yourself in the mirror every day, dress for success and remind yourself of these key truths every day where you feel like shit. You deserve it and it is actually the truth. Not bullshit – simply a reminder.
Step 2: Sit With Your Pain
Be cool. I know you want to ask who she sat with at lunch and I know you want to ask who keeps texting her this late but trust me; every time you give in to your insecurity you look more and more feeble in her mind. Be cool. Don’t let that insecurity win. In fact, I’d recommended feeling your insecurity and sitting with it. Try and explore it. Where do you feel it in your body? What does it look like? Is it a sharp dagger in your chest? Is it a swift uppercut to your gut? Draw the sensation out in your mind and see it in your mind’s eye. Now breath into it. Imagine this dagger gently dissolving. Imagine that punch soothing. Because you are cool and you are going to get through this.
Spend about ten minutes doing this and then return to her. Tell her you love her and wish her good night. Sleep on it and come back to it tomorrow from a place of calm. Be brave, do not be insolent. You are already 10x cooler and more handsome than you were yesterday and everything is under control.
Step 3: Give Her The Benefit Of the Doubt
It’s okay that you feel insecure. We all do from time-to-time. It makes you human and humble. It makes you sensitive and kind. But it also leads you down roads you don’t need to travel because the truth is your top spot was never threatened. You were never under attack. The bitter irony is the only reason she started to disengage from you is because you weren’t making her feel loved anymore. So firstly forgive yourself; you were only trying to keep what you hold most dear alive. Secondly, do not blame your partner if other men are attracted to her.
Ask yourself, are these interactions actually harmless? What would your friend or trusted person say about them? Is your position really being challenged or do you just not believe you are worthy again? If other people fancy your partner, does this really mean she fancies them back? Is it fair to keep her in a box just to protect your ego? Meditate on these. I hope you will conclude that you are worthy; that your partner is to be trusted; and that you are far safer than you think.