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Dr. Olsen
Dr. Olsen, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2336
Experience:  PsyD Psychologist
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I am really struggling with jealousy and being happy with myself.

Customer Question

I am really struggling with jealousy and being happy with myself. I have so much to be grateful for, but it seems like I am always looking for or focusing on what's wrong or what could be different. I also feel like I am focusing more on what other people have and either trying to compare myself to them or compete with them. I grew up with not much, but have always worked hard for everything I have. My husband grew up very similar to me. Some of his friends, however, are very much into themselves. I have usually blown them off, but recently, it is getting to me more and more. I am always thinking about what his friends are doing and either getting jealous or feeling like I have to compete with them. I honestly do not enjoy this about myself and wished I would just stop exhausting my energy on this issue. Any thoughts?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 6 years ago.
Hello & Welcome to JustAnswer. I can see you are self-aware, self-reflective and open to change your habit. It sounds like you may tend to look for what is missing in your life at times. Many people may have this negative habit sometimes. You may feel happier and more fulfilled as you focus your strength, talent, what you already have and strive to get what you really want and need in your life.

You may benefit from seeing a therapist who specializes in Cognitive-Behavior therapy (CBT) to work on your habit.

The CBT book "MIND OVER MOOD by Dr. Greenberger and Padesky" may help you to understand the connection between your thoughts, feelings and behavior (action). Also, two books
"Self-Esteem: A Proven Program of Cognitive Techniques for Assessing, Improving, and Maintaining Your Self-Esteem by McKay and Fanning" and "
The Self-Esteem Workbook by Schiraldi" may help you to work on and enhance your self-esteem issues.
Please let me know if you have more questions or I have overlooked any. Warm regards,

Edited by Dr. Olsen on 11/1/2010 at 3:49 AM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Do you have any recommendations on how to address this issue? I know I can get books or even try to connect with a therapist, but wondering if you had any initial thoughts. I have an extremely hectic work schedule and am not sure if I will have the time to start seeing a therapist on a regular basis. I am thinking about may be doing some on-line therapy, but am not really sure where to get started. In the meantime, I wanted to get initial thoughts on this issue and insight as to where it may be coming from. Thanks.

Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 6 years ago.
Hi, Let me ask you one more question. When did you start feeling this way? Did you feel this way recently? Or have you felt this way for a long time?

Edited by Dr. Olsen on 11/1/2010 at 4:16 AM EST
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Honestly, I am not sure when exactly I started feeling this way. I want to say probably for the last year or so. Then again, I have had so much happen this past year. I got married in September of 2009. I am Indian and I married someone that is Caucasian and so there was a lot that happened with that. I had a falling out with a group of girlfriends. Ironically, though, I feel like these 2 big "items" should make me feel more confident in myself because I made choices that were right for me. And yet, I seem to doubt myself even more and more.


Thanks, Maia

Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 6 years ago.
Hi, Maia, It sounds like you went through a lot of changes in your environment last year. I wonder if your behavior is a reaction to new situations. So you do not hang out with your old friends much? I wonder if you are actually missing your old friends. Is there a possibility that you may be missing your old friends or life-style ?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

You know, I do sometimes miss my old lifestyle. I love my husband and am grateful for our relationship. At the same time, I am a very independent person and am used to making my own decisions- good or bad. Not that my marriage takes that away from me, but it is harder than before. The whole idea of making decisions together, making sure I consider him in things that I do, etc. My old friends were a vehicle for my independence, I guess. But it's not that I want to go back to that lifestyle.... but I definitely need to figure out why I am going through this phase of constantly comparing myself, my husband, my marriage, etc. to everyone else. Thanks.

Expert:  Dr. Olsen replied 6 years ago.
Hi there, It sounds like you may have difficulty in adjusting to a new life situation - being married to him. As you mentioned, you may have been very independent person before you got married. You may be missing what you had as a single woman before - independence, freedom, dreams,old friends etc. Perhaps, you may be seeing what you may not have more than what you already have. Do you think your mental lens may be a bit negative lately as you tend to compare yourself and your life to your friends and others? I wonder if part of you may not sure as to whether your current life condition is what you really wanted or needed? It sounds like you may be questioning your happiness inside. What you may can do is being honest with your feelings about current life, examining pros and cons of your current & past life, improving (or finding ways to improve)your life if something is lacking and changing your negative mental lens to a more positive, rational and neutral lens. Please feel free to ask me more questions if you have. Warm regards,