From jealousy to joy trusting in abundance

Published 2:45 pm Saturday, November 21, 2009

Jealousy is a form of fear. It is based on a belief in scarcity. I see someone who has something I want — the money, the job, the sense of humor, the confidence, the relationship, the opportunity — and I long for those things to be mine as well.

When this happens to me, I notice I am believing in limitations. I am thinking if you have something I want, I can’t have it too. I become aware of my resentment, jealousy’s constant companion and fraternal twin. However, if I believe in abundance — that there is enough to go around for everyone (there really is!) — jealousy can find no stronghold, for I am confident whatever you have is possible for me too — and I can start looking for how to bring it into my life anytime I choose.

Jealousy is a disease of “If …then.”

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If I had a romance relationship like she has, then I’d be happy. If I could just get out of this romance relationship, then I’d be happy. If I could have children like her, then all will be well. When the kids move out, then I’ll be free. If I could just get a job like his, then life would be easy. If I could only quit my job, then my life will finally be in balance …

This is how I trap myself. I am letting myself believe that my happiness lies in what someone else has in their life, but I don’t yet have in mine.

Getting relief from jealousy requires that I give up my belief in scarcity and trust the abundance that is the reality of the universe. To trust the abundance is to believe there is enough for both you and me. My envy dissolves when I can rejoice in your happiness. The great paradox is the more I am delighted in your good fortune; the more good fortune comes my way.

Of whom are you jealous? Can you identify your belief that supports this feeling? Are you thinking you can’t have what someone else has? How can you be sure it is not possible for you to have this in another form?

Be careful. Self-fulfilling prophecies are real. If you are like me, sometimes believing something is not available to me actually blinds me from seeing it pass right in front of me.

On the other hand, when you and I believe we can have what we want, it sets in motion the circumstances required to bring it into being. Today I will let my jealousy jar me into believing in my possibilities.

How about you?

David Larson, M.S., C.P.C.C., is a licensed psychologist and the founder of the Institute For Wellness. His column appears on alternate Sundays. Comments welcome at (507) 373-7913 or