Recognizing Jealousy Although jealously is an unpleasant emotional experience, evolutionary psychologists see it as a feeling to be heeded—as a warning, a wake-up call that a cherished connection is in jeopardy and that actions must be done to reclaim the affection of one's spouse or friend.
The fear of losing what we have is ancient and universal. Jealousy is a protective mechanism designed to keep us from being separated from those we love. It triggers feelings of anger and frustration in those we love if they continue to enjoy their relationship with someone else. And it tells us that something is wrong with our relationship if we aren't causing these feelings in others.
Jealousy is also seen as a sign of health and wellbeing. People who are married or close friends say things like "he/she is really jealous of me" or "they always seem worried about whether or not I still like them." Having a healthy amount of jealousy is a good thing; it means that you are willing to put yourself second when needed and that you care enough about your partner to be angry if you feel unappreciated or cheated on.
In relationships where there is a lack of trust, jealousy is used as a weapon by one party to control the other. In these cases, jealousy may be expressed through physical abuse or acts of sabotage (such as hiding keys or breaking objects over someone's head) rather than saying anything directly.
Jealousy is defined as "a complicated emotion that involves sentiments ranging from dread of abandonment to fury and humiliation." In truth, jealousy in relationships is a sign of insecurity in both the individual we love and, more importantly, in ourselves. When we feel insecure about our place in a relationship, or if we fear being left alone, then it makes sense that we would feel jealous.
Here are some other ways to look at jealousy: It is believing that someone else could or should be with us instead of you. It's feeling pain because you think someone else is having fun when they actually aren't. Jealousy is also feeling angry or insulted even though you know that person's love for you isn't directed toward anyone else.
In terms of science, jealousy is part of our evolutionary process to ensure the survival of our genes. If we weren't protective of those we loved, then those close to us would not be protected either. This is why humans tend to be most jealous of those who are similar to themselves in some way (i.e., family members). Our brains find this type of relationship security reassuring so we don't go around killing everyone who shows us love.
In modern society, where people live together before marrying each other, this instinct can sometimes get out of control.
Jealousy is an all-encompassing emotion. When it becomes a problem, it can have a negative impact on relationships, self-esteem, and general well-being. This useful book teaches readers how to deal with jealousy in a way that prevents it from taking over their life. The five steps involved are: understand what causes your jealousy; recognize its warning signs; take action if you feel jealous; let go of your obsession with another person; and learn from your experience.
According to the authors, there are three types of jealousy: adaptive, excessive, and healthy. Adaptive jealousy is part of a normal emotional response to love or admiration. It helps us protect ourselves from being hurt or cheated on. Excessive jealousy occurs when you fixate on someone else's good fortune or quality of life and think about it all day long. This type of jealousy can be very damaging to relationships. Healthy jealousy involves recognizing another person's success or attractive qualities and feeling happy for them, but not obsessed with them. It's important to differentiate between these types of jealously because only unhealthy forms should be avoided. For example, if you know that someone is engaged but still feels jealous about this other person, then this engagement must be wrong.
In addition to teaching readers how to handle actual cases of jealousy, this book also contains helpful advice on preventing it in the first place.