Insecurity

*I happened across this explanation of insecurity the other day and it got me thinking. The explanation was:

“Insecurity is a feeling of general unease or nervousness that may be triggered by perceiving of oneself to be vulnerable in some way.........A person who is insecure lacks confidence in their own value, and one or more of their capabilities, lacks trust in themselves or others, or has fears that a present positive state is temporary, and will let them down and cause them loss or distress by "going wrong" in the future. This is a common trait, which only differs in degree between people........Insecurity can be overcome. It takes time, patience and a gradual realization that one's own worth is purely a matter of perspective (or subjective opinion of oneself), and so while it may be true that insecurity can follow from concerns relating to objective reality, this is by no means a necessity, but more a tendency. The first of Erikson's stages of psychosocial development details the challenge of finding security and learning to trust oneself and one's environment.”

I am the first to admit that I have a high level of insecurity. I certainly don’t feel insecure about who I am or my abilities. I know that I’m a caring, loving person in my private life and am good at what I do in my professional life. My insecurities are mostly in areas of my life that I can’t see the intent or motivation in, like in my relationship where I can’t read the mind of my partner.

Then I discussed this with a therapist and she said to me that usually these insecurities can often point towards our greatest gifts. For example those who are most likely to get hurt after a break up are those who actually put everything into their relationship. This isn’t a weakness but a sign that you are an incredibly generous and loving person. We discussed this further and she pointed me to an article by a therapist by the name of Ken Page.

Here is an excerpt from that article and something worth thinking about.

Some clients would complain of feeling like they were "too much"; too intense, too angry, or too demanding. From my therapist's chair, I would see a passion so powerful that it frightened people away. Other clients said they felt that they felt like they were "not enough"; too weak, too quiet, too ineffective. I would find a quality of humility and grace in them which would not let them assert themselves as others did. Clients would describe lives devastated by codependency, and I would see an immense generosity with no healthy limits. Again and again, where my clients saw their greatest wounds, I also saw their most defining gifts! Cervantes said that reading a translation is like viewing a tapestry from the back. That's what it's like when we try to understand our deepest struggles without honoring the gifts that fuel them. When we understand our lives through the lens of our gifts it's as if we step out from behind the tapestry and really see it for the first time. All of a sudden, things make sense. We see the real picture, the moving, human story of what matters most to us. We begin to understand that our biggest mistakes, our most self-sabotaging behaviors were simply convulsive, unskilled attempts to express the deepest parts of ourselves. Susan came to therapy after her boyfriend of two years left her. She had put the whole of her heart and all her energies into her relationship, and when it ended, she felt utterly destroyed. "Why can't I let go and move on like he did, or as my friends tell me I should?" she asked me on her first visit. As she described her relationship history, I saw a consistent quality of kindness in her; a soft-heartedness which people kept taking advantage of. Susan appreciated these qualities in herself, but she also felt like they were a curse. (That very ambivalence is one of the main indicators of a core gift.) I sensed that a key to her healing lay precisely there. Again and again, we worked at helping her reframe her sensitivity not as a weakness, but as a gift that she-as well as her former partners-didn't know how to honor. It sounds simple, but seeing these qualities as a gift was the foundation of new dating life for her. By seeing their worth, she could learn to understand, honor, and even treasure them. When Susan looked at her life through the lens of her gift, she felt triumphant. "I was right all along!" she said. "Those things that bothered me about my boyfriends bothered me for a reason. I wasn't crazy. I just didn't honor my gift and I found men who were all too happy to agree with me."

Core gifts are not the same as talents or skills. In fact, until we understand them, they often feel like shameful weaknesses, or as parts of ourselves too vulnerable to expose. Yet they are where our soul lives. They are like the bone marrow of our psyche, generating a living stream of impulses toward intimacy and authentic self-expression. But gifts aren't hall-passes to happiness. They get us into trouble again and again. We become most defensive-or most naïve-around them. They challenge us and the people we care about. They ask more of us than we want to give. And we can be devastated when we feel them betrayed or rejected. Since the heat of our core is so hard to handle, we protect ourselves by moving further out from the center. Each ring outward represents a more airbrushed version of ourselves. Each makes us feel safer, puts us at less risk of embarrassment, failure, and rejection. Yet, each ring outward also moves us one step further from our soul, our authenticity, and our sense of meaning. As we get further away from our core gifts, we feel more and more isolated. When we get too far, we experience a terrible sense of emptiness. So, most of us set up shop at a point where we are close enough to be warmed by our gifts, but far enough away that we do not get burned by their fire. We create safer versions of ourselves to enable us to get through our lives without having to face the existential risk of our core. The Gift Theory model invites us to discover what our core gifts are (most of us don't really know), to extricate these gifts from the wounds that keep them buried, and to express them with bravery, generosity, and discrimination in our dating life. When we do this, we find healthy love moving closer. If you're looking for love, try to discover your own gifts. They shine in your joys and strengths, but they also live-and hide-right in the heart of your greatest insecurities and heartbreaks. If you learn to lead with them in your dating life, you will find-almost without trying-- that you're experiencing mutual attractions with people who love and treasure the very gifts you're discovering.

The full article can be found at http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/finding-love/201109/how-your-greatest-insecurities-reveal-your-deepest-gifts

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Stevie

brisbane