The Making of “Self”
Though we probably don’t realize it, since childhood, bits and pieces of feedback about who we are, the way we should act, or how we express ourselves may have shaped our self image. Especially when we were younger our innocence made us more open, impressionable, and vulnerable to taking in other people’s comments.
Perhaps the popular kids told us, “You’re not cool enough for us.” A teacher said, “You’re a troublemaker.” Or it’s possible our parent’s criticism or inattention implied, “You’re not lovable.”
Like pieces to a jigsaw puzzle, we gathered morsels of information that contributed to how we define ourselves.
I did the 21-Day Meditation Challenge on Miraculous Relationships from Deepak Chopra and Oprah. Mr. Chopra explained, “Self image is the self your ego believes you are. The ego takes its cues from the outer world, feeding on approval and security, often fueling feelings of inadequacy and fear.”
There have probably been times when we came across someone’s contempt or disdain for a part of our being. While they projected themselves and their preferences onto us, we also ingested it as a judgment for what’s “bad.” Maybe that led to us altering ourselves in some way to either be accepted or at least not draw scrutiny to us.
How long have we carried around what other people have told us? Do we even realize we’ve been doing it? Who contributed a review to how we describe our Self? When have we allowed the external to implant the internal?
It’s a tough balance since we are hard-wired to feel and seek connection. When we perceive we’re being dismissed or rejected we become afraid of isolation.
Yet the ego leads us to believe if we have validation from others, we have a sense of security because we’ll have the potential to establish a bond.
But what kind of connection is it if we have to be inauthentic? It’s actually a more fragile association because it is one that we will forever be chasing to keep up with.
Perhaps it’s because we have been insincere that we’re surrounded by what doesn’t resonate with us and that’s why we’re alone. The more authentic we are, the more we attract that to ourselves.
That is why in yoga we work on siphoning the source, our soul; the one place that’s been around longer than any other authority figure, before we were molded by our cultures and rules of society, family, and institutions.
We have the amazing power to create ourselves and our connections from a genuine place. When we begin to fear, we have to believe in abundance. We were produced for a reason, out of love from the universe, who wouldn’t put us here just to leave us alone. There is compatibility in this world, somewhere.
Anne Wilson Schaef said, “Perfectionism is self-abuse of the highest order.”
Entry filed under: Courage, Creating Awareness, Ego, Having Faith, Intention. Tags: Anne Wilson Schaef, Attachment, Awareness, Deepak Chopra, Finding Love, happiness, Judgement, Mindfulness, Oprah, Spirituality, Yoga.