Jealousy is a master storyteller.

I imagine jealousy, looking much like the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. Sitting there, greedily devouring all the knowledge in the basement of my brain, planning and plotting and filling in all the missing pieces to create a very convincing work of fiction. Whispering its dark narration into my heart and soul. Only there, it is perceived as truth.

Jealousy creates a powerful fiction. A believable one. It does this by adding conflict to the story. It adds obstacles, adversaries, pain, struggles, torment. It over-dramatizes reality into a much more entertaining version where the characters are put through hell. Think about every good movie you’ve seen. Every good novel you’ve read. Are any of them missing things to overcome?

Jealousy itself is such a basic human emotion, that you can find it in nearly every story ever written. It is a large part of the human story. Understanding we are all capable of jealousy, it is worthwhile to deconstruct why it exists. Simply denying it, or choosing not to address the behaviors it creates, can result in the end of a relationship. In fact, jealousy is powerful enough to end lives.

Does this sound familiar? A married man has an affair with a woman. What he understood as a simple fling ends up being a horrific nightmare. Dramatic suicide attempts, wild untruths, violence, stalking… she will not be ignored. Fatal Attraction is an example of what happens when you allow jealousy to write your script.

Jealousy is also a tyrant and there is no greater bully story than Cinderella. A stepmother and two step sisters regularly tormenting and manipulating a young girl with unkind words. Eventually the snide remarks and nasty behavior turned abusive with jealousy driving their bully behavior.

In the movie Titanic, Rose is merely a beautiful possession to her rich fiancé. Her fiancé doesn’t frame Jack and leave him on the Titanic to die because he loves Rose but because he felt the kind of jealousy that seeks to possess someone.

Your life isn’t a movie though. It’s your life. It’s not there for somebody else’s entertainment. It’s there for you. You live through it and enjoy things. You discover things. You have plenty of troubles, yes, but think about how good it can feel when you overcome those troubles.

Your life doesn’t work as a movie script. Way too much drama. Why not demand a rewrite? Why not rewrite it yourself? It is your life after all. You basically get to say what happens.

It is time we take our narrative back. We write this story. With work, it can be a good one. Our story doesn’t have to be one of torment and torture, it can be one of strength and overcoming. We can be the hero instead of the villain. We need to stop letting jealousy create fiction and write our own autobiographies instead.

Don’t believe everything that you read or hear. We don’t have to make enemies so quickly. We can work harder to understand people we see as threats. We can see anger in a person’s eyes, and love them in return. We can benefit from the successes of others and help them succeed. And we certainly can also tell jealousy to take a hike.

This is my story. Mine. Not jealousy’s.

Jealousy doesn’t get to say what happens. I do. And I will have my happy ending.