18 Traits of Highly Jealous People

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By Darryl Henderson

Jealousy is a complex emotion that almost all of us have felt, at some point, in some form. It can be a brief passing feeling or all-consuming, with some more vulnerable to it than others. To understand this phenomenon, here are 18 traits of highly jealous people.

Anger, Resentment, and Bitterness

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Among the many emotions that accompany jealousy, anger, resentment, and bitterness are, unfortunately, three of the most common. Having these negative emotions is not pleasant and can even lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, stress, and a long list of other ailments triggered by a weakened immune system. 


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It’s believed by Verywell Mind that insecurity stems from childhood trauma and social pressures, provoking feelings of self-doubt and jealousy. Insecure minds find it hard to rest, often being overcome by a fear of rejection, most notably arising when a partner becomes worried about the idea of their partner spending time without them.

Low Self-Esteem

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Living with low self-esteem will inevitably lead to bouts of jealousy as you wonder why you lack the confidence of others. People with low self-esteem regularly seek validation from others, often by fishing for compliments, ultimately forming a coping mechanism for their jealousy.

Controlling Behavior

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Controlling behavior toward one’s partner, stemming from insecurity and a major factor of jealousy as a whole, is the cornerstone of a toxic relationship. It involves the controlling individual dictating their partner’s life, who they spend time with, their daily routine, and what they do in their free time. It’s pretty tragic!

Suspicious Minds

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Jealous people have a hard time allowing others into their lives, often becoming highly suspicious of their actions. This is usually, as Centerstone suggests, the result of an intense fear of loss and worry that they will come to appreciate this person only to be let down by them further down the line.

Comparing Themselves to Others

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Jealous people spend copious amounts of time comparing themselves to others, which inevitably gets in the way of self-betterment. This makes them resentful of the person they are comparing themselves to, as they wish they had the possessions or life of the other person.

A Lack of Trust

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It’s rare that a naturally jealous person will have 100% trust in their partner, even if their partner hasn’t done anything to suggest they can’t be trusted. Sadly, this will inevitably lead to their partner being on the wrong end of a barrage of unjust questions, with their answers not even being listened to.

Finding Rivals

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Instead of appreciating their relationship for what it is and learning to trust their partner, a jealous person will tend to seek out potential rivals for their partner’s affection. This can be in the form of friends, co-workers, or as loose as the person who works in the local coffee shop their partner frequents!


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A jealous person’s mind can quickly spiral out of control into bouts of obsessive thoughts, which can be hard to switch off. They will focus intensely on something that happened to them that affected them, letting it anger them again and again in a self-deprecating spiral.


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You may have thought that jealousy and envy were the same things, but there is a slight distinction between the two terms, although they do exist together. Dictionary.com highlights that envy is when you feel upset that someone has something you want, whereas jealousy is more severe, inspiring feelings of resentment and inner turmoil.

Resenting Others’ Achievements

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Celebrating the achievements of others is never a strong point for a jealous person, especially if the other person has achieved something that the jealous person was also striving for. You’ll likely see them standing at the back of the room with their arms folded, refusing to take part in the round of applause.

Unstable Emotions

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Sharp feelings of jealousy can throw all of your emotions off-kilter, causing great internal instability. This can lead to mood swings, bouts of depression, and fits of anger for the person affected, with the problem likely to become worse unless some form of therapy is undertaken.

Overthinking Social Interactions

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Overthinking and overanalyzing social interactions is a common behavioral trait of jealous people, who often look for hints that someone has done them wrong. As you can imagine, this form of paranoia will inevitably cause things to be blown way out of proportion, potentially destroying relationships.


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Jealous people don’t just project their negative feelings onto others; they are often hypercritical of their own situation and abilities, too. Whereas self-help teachings instruct you to practice positive self-talk, jealous people will often stand in front of the mirror and do the exact opposite.


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Paranoia is one of the more concerning parts of a jealous person’s inner workings, as it causes them to believe people are going behind their backs and conspiring against them when, in reality, they’re not. This can cause severe damage to someone’s mental state and will require some serious therapy to address it. 


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Being filled with jealousy can be exhausting for the person affected; it’s almost impossible to switch off their mind, making it hard for them to relax. Unfortunately, the University of Rochester states that these exhausting feelings of jealousy can even become so severe that they lead to heart disease and certain forms of cancer!

Projecting Onto Others

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It’s not uncommon for jealous people to project and accuse others of doing the exact things that they are doing, as this helps them detach themselves from their behavior in their own minds. This can happen in platonic friendships, family scenarios, and romantic relationships and can be detrimental to the happiness of all involved.

Sabotaging Relationships

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Finally, jealousy, for obvious reasons, is a catalyst in the sabotage of many relationships, as it provokes controlling behavior, toxicity, and mistrust. Jealous behavior will only cause people to pull themselves away from a relationship rather than conform to being controlled and mentally abused, even if the jealous person resents this awful personality trait. It’s truly a sad situation.

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