As children we are held by boundaries, the healthiest and happiest children are those who know where they stand with people. That there are lines which, if crossed, bring a negative result. This leaves them free to concentrate on being children and the education that brings. Children raised in too loose an environment with no experience of being held back from their own free will, rarely hearing no, can live a life of frustration and anger, always pushing against the next boundary. There is little peace as they begin to believe that their will is the most important issue. When, in adulthood, they approach the world, in the same manner, it can lead to real unhappiness and frustration. The energy that might be put to their creative development of ideas is concentrated on the anger of frustration and a feeling of unfairness, and often a feeling of failure. Eventually, this feeling becomes a burden; the sorrow at not inevitably achieving what they desire as they grow into adults can make it too painful to even try.
Equally a lack of positive regard, perceived or otherwise, as we grow leaves us with this same fear of not being good enough. The two sides of us, one overly expectant the other expecting nothing. We know that life can be terribly unfair and of course, it is normal to feel disappointed at times when things don’t work out for us, but it is our resilience that paves the way for true success. As the saying goes it is not the falling down that is the problem it is the failure to get up again.
This can be seen as a contrary argument, we need boundaries as children in order to grow resilience and confidence and yet we know as adults it is in pushing boundaries to discover what we really can achieve that we find success. Forcing ourselves to be braver than we feel.
The answer is in our self-awareness. When we check out our motives for behaving in a particular manner, or consider why we really want something than life becomes considerably easier. If we start to understand that, we have not made that phone call, put in that job application, spoken to that person because we fear rejection, then we can start to come to terms with our fears and as we do they diminish. Will the world stop turning? Will anything truly catastrophic happen?
Just like when we were children, if we can rid ourselves of our doubts about our worthiness, intelligence, beauty then we can forge ahead, striving for our goals.
All too often we feel that just being ourselves will not be enough. We can look around and think that everyone else is achieving great things, with their perfect families, perfect home and stunning good looks. Now just run through that again, is everyone else really doing as well as you imagine in all the areas your imagine. Or are they just getting through with their own demons and areas of discontent? Once we begin to accept that the majority of us face regular challenges in dealing with the human condition of the negative voice in our head and the frankly cruel review we can give ourselves when we look in the mirror, then we can settle in and enjoy being ourselves.