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Post-Divorce Jealousy: 3 Ways to Beat It Before It Beats You

Post-divorce jealousy is a not-so-rare phenomenon that can hold you back years when it comes to rebuilding your own life and finding your own “happy place.” That’s the theory of attorney Krista Barth, who writes that “No good comes from worrying about the things others have, material or otherwise.”

She continued: “Your ex has a new significant other, a new house, a new car. Your ex is traveling the world (and they never did this with you). Your ex is spending your child support payment on their nails or golf. They are now father or mother of the year, and they never even changed a diaper! You cannot control someone or their actions, but you can control your reactions.”

This is very good advice if you feel yourself suffering from post-divorce jealousy. Here are some actionable things that you can do to change your outlook.

1. See the benefit to what your spouse is trying to accomplish. 

If your spouse has improved their parenting game or grown more responsible, think about how that can benefit your children. If you don’t have kids, you might instead see it as a wakeup call to focus less on them and more on you. After all, the way that most people start making improvements in their lives, is they look inwardly and change the things that aren’t working.

2. See the benefit of no longer being ‘connected’ to your spouse. 

There are times where your ex is going to appear better off than you, just like there are times when roles will be reversed. It’s called life. You go through ups and downs. They go through ups and downs. The important thing to remember is that you cannot control their ups any more than you can control your downs. You can, as Barta writes, respond well, however. If you’re lamenting the fact that your ex’s life is on the upswing and yours isn’t, then they’re obviously not your favorite person. Why not change your perception as a result and bask in the glory of your own freedom? They’re no longer your problem. Be happy with that!

3. Start living for you. 

Until you realize that you are just as capable of adopting a positive outlook and making good changes in your life, you’re always going to be trailing behind this hypothetical ex. Instead of doing that, start living for you. Set your own goals. Work hard to accomplish them. Lose weight, get in better shape, eat right, rest, pursue your passions and interests. This is your time, not theirs.

Jealousy never looks good on anyone. It affects how you feel about yourself and how others perceive you. Before giving in to it, apply some positivity and the tips mentioned above.

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