Having the ability to confront all of our feelings head on and be present with them is one of the most important gifts we can give to ourselves. I believe our world would be a very different place if we were taught this from an early age. Instead, we are usually given messages that cause us to perceive feeling our true emotions as a demonstration of weakness or simply unnecessary. There is that beautiful truth, "What you resist, persists." If we don't feel what is really occurring within us, these buried emotions will manage to show up in creative and often ugly ways. There is that other beautiful truth, "You have to feel it to heal it." Giving ourselves permission to FEEL what's true for us allows us to open the doorway to the truth of what our heart is calling forth in us.
The truth is all emotions are valuable and can teach us profound lessons if we are willing to see them in this way. Every feeling is a signpost that has the ability to lead us to growth and increasing self-awareness. This includes the feeling of jealousy. I love this emotion because it can really help us to learn so much about what is going on within us if we choose to make use of it in a conscious and empowering way.
Jealousy is an emotion that will arise simply because we are observing something in someone that we are longing to uncover and own within ourselves.
Our power lies in the knowing that we can choose to either unconsciously react or gracefully respond to this emotion based on the thoughts that we believe about the outside world and more importantly about the internal world happening within us. We can either perceive jealousy from a fearful (ego) perspective or we can perceive it from a loving (truthful) perspective.
Choosing to perceive jealousy from a fearful perspective keeps us from acknowledging that the emotion even exists. Instead, we will deny, ignore and suppress the feeling each time it arises. We don't think twice about feeling jealous, but rather we will automatically react with thoughts that may sound like or similar to:
"They had to work very hard for that"
"I should just be settle and be happy"
"They are greedy"
"That was just meant for them"
"That isn't meant for me"
"I'm not good enough"
"I'm not worthy enough"
"I can never have that."
"That only happens for some people"
"I'm not meant to have that."
"Some people are just lucky"
"That is too good to be true"
"He/she always gets what they want"
These low energy and exhausting thoughts are endless and usually live so deeply within us. So deep in fact that we have no awareness that they are even brewing under the surface let alone of how they are causing us to feel. They are poison for the soul... plain and simple and will never allow us to truly connect with our truth if we don't allow ourselves to become aware of them.
The ego is always on a mission to feel like it is right and to make it feel safe and in control. Therefore, when we are seeing through the eyes of the ego, we will tend to criticize or judge others for having the very thing that we desire. We may even make excuses for why they have what they have in order to make ourselves feel better for not having it. When we do this, we opt out of going within ourselves and facing the truth of what our own desires are. It is much easier to criticize and judge others rather than to muster up the courage to take responsibility for our own truth. From this perspective, we play the role of the victim... we become trapped by our fearful thoughts... we remain in denial.
But there is another way...
If we choose to perceive jealousy from a loving perspective, then we are willing to recognize and own the emotion as it arises within us. Rather than deny it, we are grateful for it because we are aware that it is teaching us something very valuable about ourselves. We then might ask ourselves the following questions to gain more clarity;
"What am I really feeling jealous about?"
"What is it within me that is bringing up this feeling?
"What is it that I really desire that I'm not allowing myself to have?"
"Why do I believe that I can't have this?
"Who am I blaming for feeling this way?"
"What other beliefs are attached to this feeling?"
"How can I begin to see how I can fulfill this desire too?"
The answers may surprise you. If we really investigate our thoughts and desires, we will notice that we are really desiring the "feeling" that we believe having the "thing" will give us. If you answer the questions honestly, you may come to discover you are just envious of someone's confidence, courage, happiness, assuredness, silliness, belief in themselves, lightheartedness, ability to speak up, etc.
I have personally experienced this emotion from both perspectives. My jealousy showed up when I would observe others speaking up and doing what they loved. When I came from my Ego, I found myself criticizing and judging them. As I awoken to the idea that they were just showing me a quality that I admired and hadn't yet embraced, I began to practice owning and accepting this quality within myself. The good news is we can't see in someone else what isn't already in us. Jealousy really is just directing us to the deeper truth of who we are. The key is to allow the feeling to be with us and have the willingness to ask ourselves empowering questions. They will lead you to some very powerful answers. It is these answers that will guide you to make the necessary choices that will give you exactly what your own heart is longing for. Trust that and act on it. It is truly the sweet spot of freedom.