A Stuck Will-Power Gear
Downplaying Our Good Intentions
In my relatively long life I have met a few individuals with a questionable coherence, however most of those were just alcoholics with their pickled brains. Other than those few, all were more or less capable of putting two and two together - but it's also those that made me question the capacity of humans to do what they know is best for them.
Now, before some of you start looking for symptoms of perfectionism in my article, let me assure you that I have no such tendencies to expect people to act like some geniuses. And yet, without my attempts to sound convincing, you will probably agree that so many folks are acting as if a gear is stuck in their will-power transmission box.
Not Really Following a Bliss
Talk with just about anyone these days, and notice a pretty solid understanding of the basics of life in them. Even teenagers may surprise you with an insight that's probably resulting from their attachment to their electronic devices while being exposed to information that we, old-timers didn't have an advantage of.
Many folks will go as far as parade with an impressive level of wisdom or education, and all that may look plausible enough - until you take a peek into their private affairs. That's where you may find this incredible discrepancy between all that smartness and proud looks - and what it has to show for in terms of happiness, relationships, and a sound effectiveness in the way they generally function in life.
Why Are We Prone to Settling for Less?
To drop in just a little example of this dysfunctional reasoning, here we have our strange way of seeing and choosing our leaders. How many of us seem to be "in business" of bitching about our politicians, current leaders, or presidential candidates - only to end up giving our vote to a yo-yo who only seems like the one who may at least do the least damage.
For some strange reason we settle. Why? Why was Bush Junior elected twice, after clearly showing at the middle of his first term that he was not cut to make a speech, let alone lead the country through some hard times?
Think about it. A president that is these days proclaimed as the "worst president in American history" - got elected twice, instead of having been impeached during his first term. Why are people working against themselves?
That Little Demon in Us
Indeed, what is it in us that is willing to settle for less?
"I know, I should have married John, not Steve, but don't ask me why I didn't, because I don't know it myself". Sounds familiar? So often, it's like we are under a spell to do exactly the opposite from what was in our best interests.
There seems to be that invisible sabotaging little demon lurking from the dark corners of our soul and throwing sticks into our gears, making us settle for "whatever seems to be a good idea at the time."
Governments, and medical profession, and skilled advertisers, and convincing lovers...everybody can apparently take us for a ride, and for no reason that we could put a finger on - our life sucks one way or another. What's going on?
Inner Conflict of Tendencies
Maybe it's time for us to ask that uncomfortable question : "What do we really have against ourselves - and who back there inspired us for it". There is obviously an inner "spoiler" hidden in our emotional makeup; so every time "one-in-us" goes hot about something or someone, the "other-in-us" does its very best to thwart it somehow, making us constantly run our life in our low gear.
Now, now, it's only a figure of speech, and I didn't really mean anything like a "split personality". And neither was I suggesting that you seek services of an exorcist to kick some demons' asses out of you.
It's all just an inner conflict of tendencies caused by an early childhood bug implanted into our little impressionable heads with those words : "You are good for nothing" - or anything along those lines. You pick the version that rings the bell for you.
What a Silly Unconscious Computation
So we want to lose weight, and we are doing great the first couple of days, maybe even longer - only to slip back in a miserable defeat. Then we may be wondering - how could we mobilize all that will-power for those initial few days, and where did it suddenly go?
After all, we are still of the same opinion that we want to lose weight. Well, believe it or not, we are actually scared of success, and that's why we are bound to "abort the mission". You see, to the reasoning of our subconscious mind, the prophecy of that sabotaging voice has to be fulfilled.
It's that voice echoing our parents' verdict about our being "good for nothing". Let us not forget, that voice belongs to someone on whom our life used to depend, and so it got to become an important component of our very survival arsenal. In effect, it's telling us : "It's wrong for your survival to succeed". Can you see the (silly) connection?
Scared of Success
I am not kidding you, folks, we are scared to anger that authority in us by acting opposite from its prediction, so we are taking a "low profile in life". The science of hypnotism, with conditioning being its important part is telling us that we may be programmed to do things that are contrary to our beliefs and our best interests.
Somewhat similar mechanism is at work at compulsive behavior, when we wash our hands hundred times a day, or we step over every crack on the sidewalk, or we re-check, and re-check if the door is properly locked while leaving the house.
That's how we unconsciously block that gear in our mind that's supposed to take us from here to there in our good intentions. It seems to be stronger than us, and after a while we even don't try to go beyond the authority of that misleading voice.
Now, is it possible to get unstuck from that childhood spell? Of course it is, and it's definitely much easier than our shrink would want us to believe. Indeed, if it was up to him, we would be stuck re-examining our age of pre-toilet training to find out why we peed into diapers.
Some things we simply outgrow, and so we can outgrow those counterproductive remarks from our parents about our value. Some ninety percent of success in yanking ourselves out of that spell is in the simple realization about the true nature of their prediction.
We have to start seeing it as nothing more than our diapers that we outgrew. There is no need to "struggle" with a tendency to wear diapers. It's all nonsensical, and in a sense almost silly to prolong obeying our parents' predictions. After all, we don't agree with some other opinions of our aging parents - why would we hold on that one?
The Truth Behind Those Belittling Remarks
This could be a good time to learn something about our parents' belittling remarks. Did you know that we generally treat out children, even our pets the same way that we are treating our inner child?
When we act over-demanding and critical towards that kid in us, we tend to project that treatment onto those who by their appearance remind us the most of him or her. Look how many parents are pushing their kids into some exhaustive training, or playing an instrument, or qualifying for a beauty pageant, or excelling in education - just to fulfill their own missed ambitions.
Thus, when our parents were being too critical, or "mean", or ridiculing towards us, that didn't mean that we were the ones who "deserved" it - but they were mistreating their own inner child and only projecting it on us.
Of course, they didn't know what they were doing, it all came so spontaneous and somehow "necessary" and unconsciously generated, that they were not aware about their doing it to us while doing it to themselves.
Breaking the Spell
It often helps using some simple metaphoric illustrations of what we do to ourselves unconsciously, in order to drop it once and for all. Namely, it's necessary to make a sharp distinction between our actual abilities and our subconscious blockages of those abilities which are trying to suggest "dis-abilities".
You know that you are perfectly capable of drinking a glass of water or whatever. Now, if someone succeeded to persuade you to spill it just before the glass reaches your lips, you might obey that for a while, all along knowing that you can do it.
It's the same with being functional and successful in life and not settling for less than you deserve. So, the whole trick of blasting that childhood spell is in two parts ; one in realizing that parents were doing it to themselves, not to you; and the other in seeing through the nonsense of believing in an inability to do something that is humanly possible and probably doesn't even take any effort.
Indeed, what is more natural than just shake it off from our emotionality and move on in life, not wasting any more time on the nonsense. Remember the time when you misplaced your car keys, frantically searching and cursing your "being insane" for misplacing them?
Then you found them, and what did you mentally do right after? Did you take the "trauma of the experience" into everything that you did for the rest of that day? Of course not. You just moved on, doing your best to leave the whole nonsense behind.
Likewise, don't "honor" those childhood incidents any longer by giving them any importance in your life. Move on. It's such a relief going wisely about it and ignoring it together with your toilet training. We just can't afford to stay emotionally stuck in the past.
Let Us Pay Our Dues to Our Life
There is so much fun that we owe to our life!
So much gutsy exploring of opportunities which will all become obvious once that we are willing to see them. So, let's dress up for success, go places, surprise everybody who knows us with a brand new-ourselves!
Let's enjoy this new-found freedom and tear down the cobweb of reluctance and self-doubt! Let's blow the dust of our self-esteem and polish it until it shines! Of course, you can choose to see all this as a pep-talk, but really, how does a genuine encouragement and support look different, if it has to use the same words.
The moment you start doubting, ask yourself "what in you" is doing that doubting, and grow beyond it. You may be one of those many who owe it to their life - to once and for all break loose from that inner spell. And if you are - you are not alone.
Can you imagine how different the whole world would be if everybody was content with themselves? Well, we don't have to wait until this personal liberation becomes a trend. It's too sweet to be left for tomorrow.