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Who, me? Jealous?

She's the best friend ever, She's sweet and smart, shares her designer duds, and even has a hot BF with cute friends. So why are there days you wish she'd just evaporate?

As you're bemoaning your most recent zit, how can you help but compare yourself to your BFF Natalie? She hasn't had a breakout--ever. No wonder she has such a cute boyfriend, you think. You open your closet for something to wear. Nada. Natalie doesn't have this prob. She just got a slammin' pair of Citizen jeans--the ones you've coveted since you spotted them at that boutique weeks ago. Will you ace your history test today? Natalie will ... and she barely studies.

No matter what pushes your buttons, one thing is certain: Feeling jealous is totally human. What matters is bow you handle it. Here's how to get a grip....

Lay it on the line

It's OK to acknowledge your feelings and express them to your bud: "Trig is easy for you What's your secret?" Her reply might surprise you. Perhaps her math-obsessed father quizzes her every weekend Or maybe it's second nature to her. Should you resent that? No!

She might envy you for how you decorate your room or dodge a soccer ball--things that come easier for you than trig. Appreciate each other's talents--maybe she could offer you some rest pointers. and you could coach her in soccer.

Put on a happy face

Look, it's not your BFF's fault her parents whisk her off to the Caribbean or that she looks like Kate Bosworth. Determine her value as a friend, not the value of her purse or expanding trophy, collection. AIM be genuinely happy for her when she scores something. She'd be just as happy for you, right? Keep the jealousy in check and support her the way you know she'd support you.

Love thyself

Learn the art of embracing all your wonderful qualities--flaws and all. You're defined by your personality and core values. No one worthy will like you less because you wear Tractor jeans and not Citizen. Or because your cell isn't a picture phone. Or because you don't have an iPod. You're you, and you're terrific!

Let it shine

Yeah, Natalie won the swimming championship. But are you really jealous that she has to get up at 5 a.m. daily for laps and that her hair is chlorine green? Accomplishments such as a gold medal or A+ usually require lots of sacrifice. It's easy to forget that when you don't see the guts behind the glory.

There are things you can control (your feelings) and things you can't (your BFF just got another near-perfect report card). To confront your jealousy, make a secret list of all the things you envy ... then wad it up into spitballs.

What a girl wants

Jealousy has its merits. Really. Use it as a tool to figure out what you crave. Yes, we'd all love to have Citizen jeans, but how much does it really matter? If it means so much, make a goal to save enough money. If it's a passing fancy, compliment your friend on her great new jeans (that's what friends do) and throw roses at yourself for realizing it's what's on the inside that counts. Jealousy also can drive you. Want good grades? Study harder or get tutored. Jealousy can work in your favor if you view it as a little voice telling you that you deserve to give life all you've got. So get out there, and make it happen!
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Title Annotation:Friends
Author:Muchnick, Jeanne
Publication:Girls' Life
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 1, 2005
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