I thought today I might write about a personal struggle that I am trying to overcome, to see if I can clarify my thought processes around my struggles.
First problem that comes to mind: My fear of returning to my previous work environment. Why? I feel I’m afraid of being put into positions where I can be negatively perceived by others. Why? Because this I feel will lead to emotional pain. Why would it? I must have suffered something in the past where I was negatively perceived, where I felt pain and shame, and it is probably human nature to want to avoid pain.
Second problem: Fear of public speaking, fear of meeting new people (mainly girls in the context of dating), fear of dancing or doing things I’m not good at publicly. Why? Problem is the same as the first – I’m afraid of negative perception leading to disappointment and pain for myself.
Both problems seems to be the same issue manifesting in two different circumstances. One in a situation that I can’t avoid, and other in situations that I can. One comes out as anger, frustration, anxiety and sometimes suicidal thoughts, while the other comes out as avoidance and self deception.
The core issue seems to be with my self identity, or ego. I must have constructed an ego which has identified with being smart, being good at things, and not someone who is comfortable appearing dumb and unattractive to others. When I get into situations that threaten this self image, I may be deploying these various defense mechanisms. But the problem does not go away.
So why have I ended up with such an ego? My mind probably picked up things that have been said to me throughout my life, and made an image of who I am. Even though these outside information is likely to be completely flawed and biased, therefore my self image also, I am for some reason calling this accumulation of other’s perception of me, as myself.
How to change my identity? I’m not sure. The bible would say that I am a child of god. Yoga and various spiritual disciplines would say that my ego is an illusion and that I am one with the universal intelligence. These descriptions are slightly helpful, but until I perceive what I actually am or am not directly, I don’t think I will completely escape my ego. I guess I need to learn to throw away my ego that is built on false information, and perhaps the true self will reveal itself.