Everything was going great, until it happened again. Like it always does, your jealousy crashed in and spoiled the date you were on. Just like in the past, your jealousy ruined the good thing you had going with a fabulous guy and left you miserable and embarrassed.
That’s the way that jealousy works.
It feels like it’s a separate being that takes over when you least expect it. Your jealousy seems like some sort of alien that possesses you and makes you say and do things that you later regret…and that make it impossible to attract and create the kind of relationship you really want.
You want to keep an open mind about this person you’ve just met or are just getting to know. You want to stop the expectations that he’ll disappoint, betray and leave you like your ex did. You want to silence the jealous questions that won’t let up and that cause you to see your date as someone other than who he really is…
But it feels like a losing battle.
It’s time to take back your power from your jealousy. This starts when you remember that YOU get to decide what you’ll do when the familiar nagging and nauseating feeling comes up. You might not be able to prevent a jealous worry or fear from popping into your mind, but you CAN choose what you’ll do next.
Your jealousy doesn’t have to ruin another date or relationship and it won’t when you make and keep making turn-arounds. Turn-arounds are questions you can ask yourself that interrupt the momentum of jealousy and literally turn around your mood and attitude.
An effective turn-around question will lead you toward calm, clarity and an openness to connecting with the one you’re with (instead of going along with whatever your jealousy dictates).
Write these 5 turn-around questions on a piece of paper and keep it with you. Here they are with some example situations where they’ll be helpful.
#1: “What’s really true?”
It’s been two hours and your boyfriend hasn’t texted you back. Your jealous mind suggests it’s because you’re not important to him and you’re worried he’s with another woman. Stop this line of thinking by asking yourself, “What’s really true?” List off everything you know about your relationship and leave out the guesses.
#2: “What do I need right now?”
His ex called and is in a crisis situation. He wants to be the nice guy and go help her out but you’re afraid she’s just manipulating him and trying to break you two up. “What do I need right now?” will help you re-direct your attention to what will help you calm down. Do you need to go be with a friend while he’s helping his ex? Do you need a hug and reassurance from him that this isn’t a threat to your relationship? Find out and get what you need.
#3: “What would an observer see?”
You’re sure he’s been checking out the cute bartender at the club all night long and your jealousy tells you that he’d rather be going home with her than with you. Before accusing him, step back and ask yourself, “What would an observer see?” If you were someone outside the situation, would there be any real reason/proof to believe that he is interested in the bartender? Stick to what you can see and hear.
#4: “What’s most important to me?”
The guy you’ve been dating seems to be avoiding your calls. You two have been having a great time and spending every weekend together, until you asked about the “C” word. You asked him if he’s ready to be a couple and date exclusively and he hasn’t given you an answer yet. His silence has struck fear in your heart. Instead of letting your jealousy take over, ask yourself, “What’s most important to me?” Get clear about how willing you are to wait for the commitment you want. When you two do talk again, honor what you really want– even if it means walking away.
#5: “What’s possible here?”
You had a great time last night but haven’t heard a word from him today. Jealousy makes you wonder if you’re not sexy/smart/successful or otherwise enough for him and that’s why he’s not texted, called or messaged you. Before you decide to give up or to send him yet another text, ask yourself, “What’s possible here?” Review the whole range of what could be true. He could be uninterested or he could be busy or he could be nervous about what to do next.
When you realize that you just don’t know what’s true but that anything is possible, jealousy eases up and you can choose a next move that’s best for you.