Overcoming jealousy: The five dos and don’ts of learning to trust

Jealousy can be really destructive in a relationship if left unchecked

The Collins dictionary defines jealousy as being ‘suspicious or fearful of being displaced by a rival’. Ask any Love Island contestant: jealousy in a relationship can be super destructive – it can drive couples apart.

Former contestants Yewande Biala and Malin Andersson both admit that jealousy was rife in the villa and caused people to act irrationally. Yewande, who said she wasn’t a jealous person prior to joining the show, has told Kate Thornton (White Wine Question Time) that she had purposely sat on Danny William’s lap to show her love rival Arabella that he was taken.

“I was, like: I'm going to walk up there and I'm just going to sit on his lap,” admits Yewande. “I just got a little bit jealous.”

Below, five top tips to help you move on from jealousy.

DO recognise that jealousy comes from within

“It’s an insecurity, of course it is,” said Malin. “That insecurity lies down within you as a person that's deep within your soul – that means you need to change something about who you are.”

One of the main causes of jealousy is often low self-esteem. Start doing activities you love, keep a gratitude journal, exercise – anything that helps you feel better about yourself. You’ll soon find that once you feel better about yourself and your own insecurities, jealousy beats a nifty retreat.

Yewande and Malin spoke to host Kate Thornton on the White Wine Question Time podcast

DON’T ignore the whys

The first step to overcoming jealousy is to actually acknowledge that you have an issue. Jealousy in a relationship is usually a sign that something else is wrong – whether that’s with your partner or yourself. Understanding why you feel that way is key to fixing the problem.

“I feel like most people don't ask themselves why,” said Yewande. “I feel like it takes a little bit more to get to the why… If you don't get to the why, then you can't better yourself.

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DO realise that uncertainty is just part of a normal relationship

Relationships, like life, are full of uncertainty. Even when you’re married, you can’t be sure that it will stay like that and your partner will want to be with you forever. Uncertainty is just one of those things that we can’t do anything about – we have to learn to live with it.

Ironically if you push a partner for that much-needed certainty, it may even push them further away. When a negative, jealous moment pops into your head, acknowledge it, accept it for what it is and then move on. Regular meditation can really help with negative thoughts such as this – if you’re new to it, try an app like Headspace or Calm to help you start.

DON’T keep going for the same type of person

Do you find yourself going for the same partner? That charming type who ends up cheating on you or betraying your trust in some way? Then it’s time to stop the cycle. Usually we’re attracted to these kinds of people when we’re not feeling good about ourselves.

Talking about her ex-boyfriend, Malin revealed that while he did cheat on her, she believes it spoke volumes about what was going on in her mind at the time.

“It was like a mirror almost of what was going on inside my head,” she explained. “For me to attract that into my life, I mean, that was something going on in my life as well.”

DO see jealousy can be a positive emotion

If you look at jealousy as a red flag that something needs to change in your life, it can actually be a really positive emotion. Understanding what it’s doing to you and why it’s happening, can help you grow as a person.

Malin knows this first-hand. Her ex-partner cheated on her when she was pregnant and even though she was understandably eaten up with jealousy to begin with, she soon realised that was never going to help her.

“When you let that [jealousy] go and when you get to know who you are deep down as a person, you kind of forget all these bad traits of other people and you focus more on yourself and you stop judging other people,” she said on White Wine Question Time.

She added “The minute I started fixing how I felt about me and working on myself, it kind of got a lot better. We all go through trauma and life experiences and that makes us who we are today.”

Listen to Yewande and Malin talk about their Love Island experience, including why she wanted Amber Gill to win, on the latest episode of White Wine Question Time on iTunes or Spotify.