In today’s video, I’m going to share an important question that every retroactive jealousy sufferer should ask themselves to beat retroactive jealousy triggers.

Retroactive jealousy triggers will lose some of their power over you when you ask yourself this question.

Transcript below

Zachary Stockill: In today’s video, I’d like to share just a very brief two step process that I would like to encourage you to experiment with, let’s say over the next week or so.

Now, this is not going to solve your retroactive jealousy triggers overnight by any means. Overcoming retroactive jealousy can be an extended process.

But I do think you’ll find it helpful, the more you stay committed to it and the more of a habit you build up around this question that I’m about to share.

So the next time you are struggling with retroactive jealousy triggers, let’s say you’re having a particular episode where you’re thinking about your partner’s past, you’re having the urge to ask them questions, you’re freaking out about their past, you’re having an anxious response inside, maybe there’s mental movies going on about their past, whatever it is.

The first step is really to just pause.

Now, this is going to sound dead simple. What do you mean pause?

I mean literally pause, take a deep breath, realize what’s happening, realize that retroactive jealousy has temporarily taken the wheel of your brain and you can get the wheel back. This is not insurmountable, but the first step is just to pause.

Don’t ask your partner questions about their past. Don’t go on a Facebook or social media stalking rampage, nothing like that. Simply pause, stop what you’re doing immediately.

Next, I want you to try to locate the tension associated with your retroactive jealousy triggers in your body.

So for me, the classic example that I like to use is, back when I was struggling with retroactive jealousy, my jealousy would often manifest as tension in the shoulders. I’d often have my shoulders tensed up without even really realizing it, and I would often tense up my face as well. There’d be this tension around my temples and the sides of my eyes.

So become conscious of this tension and then deliberately relax it as best you can.

For me, sometimes that would just involve shaking my shoulders a little bit, stretching my face out a little bit, just being conscious of the way that this tension is manifesting itself somatically in your body.

This is a big topic. This is so important. Don’t have time to get into this now, but so often our psychological problems, disorders for lack of a better word, manifest themselves physically, and becoming conscious of the physical sensations, which are associated with our disorders is a huge step toward actually overcoming them.

Again, this is a big topic. I don’t have time to get into this right now. If you’d like more information about that, you can join my brand new online course, The Overcoming Jealousy Blueprint. You’ll find all kinds of details there.

But anyway, after you become conscious of this tension, I want you to ask yourself one question: what is the fear?

What am I afraid of? What am I worried about?

Now, this fear, this worry might not be immediately obvious to you. In fact, in many cases, it probably won’t be.

You might ask yourself this question and think, “I’m not afraid of anything. I just can’t stop thinking about my partner’s past, but I’m not actually afraid of anything.”

Ask yourself again. Don’t let yourself get off the hook. And you can ask yourself this question multiple times over the course of one day or one week.

The point is to keep asking yourself the question until you arrive at a more comprehensive answer.

My belief is that most experiences, not all, but most experiences of retroactive jealousy, obsessive jealousy are related to fear on some level.

This doesn’t represent the entire source of our problems, certainly, but I do think it’s a chunk of it, and what I have found and what thousands of students in my online courses have found, hundreds of one-on-one coaching clients, what we found is that becoming more conscious of that fear and calling out that fear is a massive step that we can take toward eventually overcoming retroactive jealousy, putting it in the rearview mirror so it’s not something we have to deal with anymore.

Because if you think about it, if you’re going around with a subconscious fear in the back of your head and you’re not even entirely certain what you’re afraid of, all of a sudden it’s far more terrifying, far more fearful than it actually is.

It’s like in horror movies, I’m thinking of some classic Alfred Hitchcock films where we don’t see the actual killer until later in the movie or there’s someone lurking behind a shadowy wall or something like that.

The fact that we can’t actually see this thing, the fact that we don’t exactly what we’re afraid of and the characters in the film don’t, it ramps up the tension, makes it even more fearful.

Whereas if we actually saw what we are afraid of, chances are very good it would become less fearful because we’re conscious of it now. We know what we’re dealing with.

This is a big topic. I could go on and on and on about this, and I do in my online courses.

But over the next week, I really hope you find this exercise interesting, fruitful, productive. And if you do find it fruitful, productive, interesting, be sure to let me know by leaving a comment below.

Once again, my brand new course, The Overcoming Jealousy Blueprint is out right now. And you can learn all about it right here.

Zachary Stockill
Zachary Stockill

Hi! I'm a Canadian author and educator whose work has been featured in BBC News, BBC Radio 4, The Huffington Post, and many other publications. I'm the founder of, the author of Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy and The Overcoming Jealousy Workbook, and the host of Humans in Love podcast.