As a race, we’re generally sensitive to thinking others are talking about us or having a go at us, when they’re talking to us about something.

When we enter a room and someone is talking, we automatically think they’re talking about us: or if someone says something, we take offence at what they say instead of understanding why they felt the need to say something in the first place. Generally, we say something because we feel the need, not because we’re trying to pick holes in someone’s character.

These behaviour patterns usually stem from learned behaviour, because we either feel threatened or totally insecure about ourselves. If we worked through each scenario separately, I am sure we wouldn’t think each scenario was about us, nor would we go on the defensive every time something was said.

We’re unique, our thought processes will never match those of others, therefore our interpretation will never match those of others either. If we took more time to understand that concept we probably wouldn’t take offence to other people’s comments.

Being a sensitive child, I automatically assumed people were talking about me. Unless we change our attitude, we will always take offence at something that is said, or what we thought was said.

16 Jun, 2013

6 thoughts on “Insecurities

  1. My confidence was damaged when I was young, so I automatically think I’m being talked about. I imagine all kinds of scenarios of me being the topic of offensive talk. I have however, gotten better and usually blow people off if I think they are discussing me. They can say what they want, but I know who I am and what I am and nobody knows me better than myself.

    I guess I think I’m being discussed due to my misbehavior when I was a teen. I got into a lot of trouble, but I wasn’t so bad because I didn’t get into drugs or alcohol or get arrested for anything! I was just a rebellious teen.

    I have always had a problem with my sister in my mind. I got everything and she didn’t get things like I did. So I automatically think when we talk she contradicts almost everything I say most of the time, like she has to prove something.

    She holds the title of being the smartest of us and succeeded in school and her career and got a lot of praise. This is what I didn’t get. So I think she talks about me to our mother and I’ve learned to just deal with it and let it be.

    I love her to death though and we really have a good relationship. Maybe it is all in my mind and I’m just insecure.

    1. Thanks Lisa. You’ve already eloquently outlined the differences between your parents’ parenting you and your sister. You have insecurities as you say, but you being given more than your sister can make the relationship turn in this way.

      I don’t think you’re imagining this at all. It’s how siblings work sometimes. From what you’re saying you’ve always struggled with your sister, but I’m sure if the chips were down you’d both pull out the stops. You would manage even with the differences between you.

      Your differences will never change unless you both change them. It’s the nature of siblings to a certain extent, but not in all cases, but when it does happen it’s usually the parents to blame.

  2. I can honestly say that I have had the feelings you describe. As a child/teenager I pretty much did what I wanted and said what was thinking with very little parental input at all or sibling interference. I was usually the one being offensive but I was never on the receiving end of it!

    That meant I brought myself up pretty much and as a result I have never really struggled with confidence or insecurity issues.

    Having a family has certainly taken its toll on my decision making ability at times, but when I look back at my formative years I guess I was quite lucky.

    1. Yes you have been lucky, not to have experienced all of these things, but I can understand your thoughts about raising a family. I do always think there is somewhat of a bigger picture there.

      I don’t believe its just about raising a family. Of course we’re responsible for a family, but we mustn’t forget work; house and bills and the financial restraints parents have to work under. The economy also isn’t at its best and that too plays its part.

      You’re bound to have insecurities and self-doubt when dealing with all of those!

  3. While engaged in a general work related conversation last week, a female co-worker abruptly asked me what I thought of her. I was immediately taken aback by her question, as I noticed her thirst for my answer. “You are a model of excellence,” I said.

    That scenario caused me to think about our insecurities and how important it is for most of us to be perceived favorably by others. I used to feel that way.

    But now, I don’t think I put much stock in what others are saying about me as I walk into a room, I don’t care. Be it family, friends or foe, a person’s negative judgement of me has no power, no weight.

    I think all of us harbour insecurities, but someone else’s interpretation of those insecurities is irrelevant.

    1. Thanks Tim. It’s not surprising you were taken aback. You’d probably have to pick me up off the floor after a comment like that, which was totally on off the cuff remark and out of the blue!

      As a child I didn’t think about the point you’re making here, but looking back I must have been bothered what people thought of me. Now of course I think differently. I have more confidence to believe in my own abilities and although I care about others of course, I believe in myself and that makes me think differently about this.

      It’s still important for people to think favourably of us, but as long as we do right there should be no reason why they don’t. If they don’t it’s up to the other person, we shouldn’t be bothered by it.

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