In today’s video, I wanted to share 4 non-obvious (but very important!) tips for overcoming jealousy.

Transcript below

Zachary Stockill: In today’s video, I’m going to detail four tips for overcoming jealousy that might seem less than obvious, or perhaps simple on the surface, but are actually really powerful.

What I want to get at are four different ideas that I think might be helpful for you to consider as you start putting in the work to overcome any kind of jealousy, whether it’s retroactive jealousy or anything else.

What I have found over seven years of one-on-one coaching with hundreds of retroactive jealousy sufferers from around the world, is that people often neglect these very simple, easy to implement solutions.

Obviously, if you’re trying to overcome, for example, retroactive jealousy or retroactive jealousy OCD, you’re going to need more tools than this.

Certainly, I’m not trying to suggest that these steps on their own will be the solution, but they will really help out no matter which program you’re following, which book or personal development program or course or therapist’s advice, whatever you’re trying now to overcome jealousy.

Following the steps in this video, I believe will really help.

The first tip I’d like to offer is make sure you’re getting some exercise.

Now, I’m not trying to sound like your parent or your gym teacher or some fitness group, because I’m certainly not a fitness guru, but one thing I have found over and over and over again, both in my own life as well as working one-on-one with hundreds of retroactive jealousy sufferers from around the world, exercise is crucially important.

As long as you’re doing something physical for around 20 to 30 minutes every day, it can really have a very big impact on your overall mood, your inclination or not to go down the retroactive jealousy rabbit hole, or indulge all of the mental movies and painful thoughts and intrusive curiosity when it comes up.

It’s just a very good idea to do something physical every day to get you out of your head quite, and that will hopefully produce some of those endorphins and get your blood flowing, get you feeling good.

The biggest tip I can give you for exercise is to find something you enjoy and just carve out a little bit of time to do it every day. Anything physical, whether it’s taking a walk around the block, or taking a swim, or playing catch with your son, like anything physical, anything that gets you moving.

I think it’s crucially important that it’s something you actually enjoy, so it doesn’t really feel like work.

So as you may or may not know, I moderate a private Facebook discussion group for students taking my premium course, Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast, and exercise is a common topic of discussion in this group.

We have found over and over and over again how much of a difference it can make in terms of overcoming any kind of jealousy. Strongly encourage you to do something physical every single day.

My second piece of advice is to watch your diet and make sure you’re using drugs and alcohol in extreme moderation.

Again, this might seem very obvious, but sometimes I get people emailing me or coaching clients, and I’ll start to dig into the practical, day-to-day reality of their life.

Sometimes things come up like, “Well, I’ll have two or three, four drinks after work every day,” or, “Maybe I’m smoking a lot of marijuana,” or whatever.

They’re making lifestyle choices that are really holding them back, that are wreaking havoc with their mood and their hormones and their brain chemistry, and it’s just a really bad idea.

Along similar lines, if you’re pounding processed sugar and eating crap all day, guess what? You’re probably going to feel like crap.

I’m sure a lot of different people are watching this who follow many different diets ranging from committed vegans, all the way to big game hunters. A lot of different people eating to love different things.

I think at the very least we can agree that eating less processed food, in general, is a good idea, like heavily processed foods and avoiding processed sugar is in general a very good idea.

I promise you this will impact your mood.

Personally, I stick to a diet of pretty much exclusively meat and vegetables with my nightly glass of wine thrown in. I feel great. My mood is pretty good for the most part. I really think a lot of this has to do with exercise and eating a good diet.

So don’t discount these very practical lifestyle factors.

Don’t discount the importance of these factors when you’re working to overcome any kind of jealousy.

The third of these tips for overcoming jealousy which I’ll give you is to limit your social media use.

I think I’m pretty successful at this myself. I do a little bit of Instagram. I log into Facebook, for example, to check the discussion in my private Facebook group. But, other than that, I really try to stay away from it.

I used to be a real Twitter junkie and a news junkie, and I’ve really, in recent years, made a concerted effort to really back away from that, to spend less time on social media, in general.

Any retroactive jealousy sufferer watching this is probably fully aware of the potential perils of social media.

You see some random photo from years ago and this leads you down on some creepy Facebook rabbit hole, and all of a sudden it’s four in the morning and you’re having an anxiety attack, or whatever.

It can get pretty dark. I’ve been there so I understand what it’s like.

Just a really good idea in general to limit your social media use. There are various ways you can do this.

For example, on my phone, on my Instagram app, it actually tells me when I’ve been on for 15 minutes that day and it shuts the app off. It says basically, “You’ve had enough Instagram for one day, Zach. You can come back tomorrow.”

Little practical tools like that, whether they’re apps you can use or settings in the app to limit your time, can be really valuable.

No matter what kind of jealousy you’re trying to overcome, just in general, like social media can be such a minefield for any kind of jealousy sufferer.

It’s easy to misinterpret things and to read too much into things and to get lost again down some weird rabbit hole. Just a very good idea to limit your time on social media as much as possible.

The fourth of these tips for overcoming jealousy is by far the least practical, but it might be the most important.

The fourth tip I’ll give you is to have some kind of a mission or purpose or project beyond your jealousy.

For example, beyond retroactive jealousy, or if you’re struggling with more irrational sort of contemporary-based jealousy, obsessive jealousy, something that you’re working on, something that gets you excited, some kind of project, some kind of work or mission or purpose that’s far beyond your jealousy.

I include this step because I think that when you’re struggling, for example, with retroactive jealousy, it’s very, very important to devote time to that and significant periods of time and to be very focused on that.

But, at the same time, I think it’s very important to cultivate a wider vision for your life, to cultivate a bigger mission, a broader mission, to try to really consider what you want as a man or as a woman for your life more broadly.

There’s a quote that I often think about by one of my favorite writers, a guy called Zan Perrion, and I can’t remember it exactly, but it’s something to the effect of “The size of your problems is the size of your life.”

I think there’s a lot of truth to that.

If your biggest problem is just jealousy, then your life just might feel small and constricted.

Whereas if your biggest problem is becoming the best man you can be or becoming the absolute best woman you can be, or being an incredible father, or being a great husband, or building some charitable business or whatever, cultivating some grander vision for your life, I think is very important.

In particular, when you’re overcoming jealousy, any kind of jealousy, it can give you a bit of perspective.

Like, “I’m dealing with this issue. I’m going to solve this issue,” and at the same time, like, “Look at what else I’ve got going on in my life. Look at my other problems. Look at my other struggles. Look at the other challenges that I’m working toward.”

It could be kind of inspiring. It can get you away from the jealousy a little bit. In general, it’s just a very good idea to be thinking about this as you work to overcome jealousy.

I hope you found these tips for overcoming jealousy useful.

If you want all of my time-tested tips for overcoming jealousy, click here to learn more about working with me one-on-one, and joining my private discussion group and premium online course, “Get Over Your Partner’s Past Fast.”


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 RetroactiveJealousy.com, the author of Overcoming Retroactive Jealousy and The Overcoming Jealousy Workbook, and the host of Humans in Love podcast.