Tag Archives: insecurity

The Defense mechanism that has a defense mechanism

It appears we all have insecurities we wear on our sleeves. They become a statement of our identity of our victim-hood. We rationalize their purpose as being “good” somehow in that it serves a critical purpose in moral righteousness and keeping us safe and pure.

Last night I discovered my one INFP-friend used jealousy. He actually defended his jealousy and said it was a good “natural” thing. He felt righteous in having it. The downfall is he couldn’t stay on facebook longer than 3 days, because he was overcome with jealousy to the point where it emotionally drained everything out of him. Also the uncertainty of online interaction and social conventions/expectations totally crippled him. He viewed everyone as caricatures of themselves insecurities covered up with false personas and incessant narcissism.

He defended his “right” to jealousy, in that to him it was a badge of his uniqueness. On one level he realized it was perhaps a “negative” insecurity but he didn’t care. Jealousy is a defense mechanism, and signifies that you are envious of other people leading lives and having things you desire yourself but feel powerless to create for yourself.

I told him if he was living his life in true accordance with his inner self and inner most desires that he would have everything he desired and jealousy would thus be impossible. In fact he would be happy for others. You can’t be happy for others if you are not happy for yourself.

My gf also an INFP also has an equally powerful defense mechanism. And that is negativity/hatred/anger towards other people.  When people don’t behave in accordance to her personal set of self-righteous values and standards, often when it even doesn’t directly affect her, it will incite great anger. Again seen form her perspective this is a righteous “good” pure anger that is most necessary in establishing high ideals and of course safety.

When I then critique her on her overt negativity, she defends her defense mechanism quite well and swiftly. To her it has kept her safe from her mothers dangerous boyfriends and all the dangerous things out in the world. To her it seems perfectly justified and if it’s excessive at times, well…she doesn’t really notice.

This sets up a dangerous baseline emotional blueprint. If for example my INFP-friend is not feeling jealousy in some amount throughout the day he will feel like somethings wrong, he will likely feel unsafe and maybe not even know why. Same with my gf, the negativity directed at other peoples way of being becomes this baseline emotion, that needs to be continually fed. If there isn’t something in her immediate social environment to ego-trip about then shell use a past memory or even make something up.

Everyone rationalizes their behaviors, when it’s obviously negative it should be a clear red flag something is deeply amiss.

So what is my defense mechanism I have defense mechanisms for? Probably excusing other peoples bad behavior. I learned to excuse my mothers emotional abuse of me, for my own survival. I defend other peoples insecurities all the while being terrified of them and thusly having judged them with disgust.

In many ways I am similar to my INFP-friend. My jealousy isn’t so much about the material things other people have, but the connection they have with friends. A picture of someone with their friends on instagram, will elicit a near instantaneous subconscious disgust reaction. The thing I desire most (connection) is also something I am often equally disgusted when I see it in other people. According to my therapist because my mother didn’t connect with me adequately, I resented connection outright.

It would stand to reason then I still needed her for my survival and thus I excused her bad “behavior” and rationalized it away in order to keep myself sane in the face of a clear lack of necessary empathetic connection.

That’s the thing about our defense mechanisms, at one point in our lives they kept us sane at the sheer injustice we felt being inflicted on us. The problem is that the defense mechanism becomes anticipatory and thusly becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Even more dangerously it becomes a beast we need to feed in order to feel like things are “normal”. If things get too good….something must be amiss we reason, so we then conjure up ghosts of the past to re-create that feeling of self-defense.

The secret to resolving these issues is partly as follows.

For my INFP-friend and his jealousy, he would need to start to learn how to feel good about the creative materializing abundance power in himself first, and then feel good and relaxed about other people when they create abundance for themselves.

For my gf and her anger-at-others-peoples-bad-behavior issue, she needs to start feeling good and relaxed about her own behaviors instead of righteous/justified in her actions/in defense of…;; and then begin looking and feeling good about other peoples good behavior.

For myself I need to learn how to feel good about doing what I want, and putting my own emotions first, and feeling relaxed about it instead of other peoples. Then I need to feel good when other people put themselves first in a relaxed manner instead of compromising themselves to other peoples emotional whims/needs.

I need to feel good about coming from my inner self and connecting emotionally from there with others. My entire way of relating to people, in terms of being overly invested in their emotional state and forgetting my own needs to change. I need to feel good and relaxed about voicing my own emotional desires and not worrying about it’s affects on others. And then feel good when I see others do the same thing.

Recently my gf and I have been watching the new TV show “From Dusk Till Dawn”. It is very much like most Quentin Tarantino movies in terms of style. An interesting thing I noticed is the main characters in the show typically have no mind filter. They are always stating out loud how they feel and what they desire in an aspergers fearless type way. The show takes what is normally very intense survival type situations and gives it this comedic overlay often injected at key intense moments. The effect is one of regulating intensity of emotion with humor. Very effective. The characters follow their hearts regardless of cataclysmic consequences and stay true to themselves.

The characters may do horrible things but at least they are doing horrible things with integrity and respect to themselves. In a strange way I find the characters forthrightness very therapeutic. It provides a good emotional template in that even in extreme survival situations the characters remain unusually calm, relaxed and true to themselves. Often even when they know they are going to die, or are in the process of dying.

I believe Quentin Tarantino is trying to teach himself through his characters a new way of being. I doubt he realizes he is even doing this. When we dream for example we feel that we merely one player among many, not realizing that dream character we are scared of or fighting we actually created to teach us a lesson about ourselves.

It is thus important that when we see traits in others we admire, we emotionally begin to embody that new emotional way of being for our personal benefit. Many people don’t take this simple little step. For example many people admire animals for their cuteness, but what they are really admiring is how present they are. Few take that opportunity to become and be like that animal and to embody the same qualities that make it “cute” in the first place.

What am I most defensive about?

destructive defensive

This is a tough one for me. And I am not really quite sure I know the answer. But the thing I am perhaps innerly most defensive about is my desire/method to connect with people via excitement or activation. I call it mind enthusiasm.

I feel like my root desires are wrong and the way I go about trying to get connection is wrong yet even knowing that both are wrong I defend them. I don’t know another way. This is a bit abstract for me, and rather cleverly hidden from myself by aspects of myself so it’s difficult to articulate.

I desire group connection above all else. And there is something wrong with this, or at least the motivation behind it. I am operating from an insecurity a state of fundamental fear of loss of connection and fear of being lonely.

Then the way I try to make up for that insecurity/fear is use excitement emotion, to dissociate into my head and use the excitement emotion of the prospect of intimacy to try to get connection.

Last night I had a dream I was trying to get a part on the show “Gossip Girl”. ( a show my gf watches)  I was trying to get in by enthusiasm alone, but that was not good enough. I needed emotional control in order to act, and knew I didn’t have it and thus didn’t deserve the part or the subsequent connection of working with a team to construct a show.

The dude interviewing me for the part was nice at first then turned into a real ass. . He was informing me my intention for wanting be on the show was wrong in the first place. Then I became defensive about my method. This opened up a lot of repressed hurt inside me as my instant compulsion was to defend that very motivation.

The thing is after I didn’t really know what my motivation should be….what was wrong with the desire to connect with people and work together in a meaningful way? I was very frustrated.

This left me feeling bereft and confused, with no clear way forward. Afterwords, I tried finding my car but couldn’t remember where i had left it and spent hours searching for it, my “mobility”. I had maps that wouldn’t work and was trying to use the sound of the horn from pressing my key dongle but could not echo locate for the life of me. Hearing is something I have difficultly with or perhaps listening. And this is why I am fucking lost and anxious without my mobility/energy. I also couldn’t see or read the map either.

There are 3 primary modes of learning or being according to the VAK system.

  • Visual
  • Auditory
  • Kinesthetic

My first two were failing me in terms of navigation. I had completely ignored the third which is by sense of feeling. And this is the problem of  how I navigate relationships with other people and myself. I try to connect with people via my visual/auditory mind rather than my heart/feelings/body. This is part of the reason I crave physical intimacy so much is because I deny it to myself, and feel that someone needs to give it to me instead. As if it is something that is externally sourced and I do not posses in the first place.

I am an amazing navigator when it comes to physical reality, and literally have visual/intuitive maps inside my head. However I am a terrible navigator when it comes to the dream world of emotions. And the flip side of this physically is that I would make a terrible actor. Modern society has an obsession with actors/actresses, and it has been a secret desire of mine to be one for a long time. So much success with so little “logic” work.

The thing is even those who are good at acting, and have seeming emotional “control” are they better for it? With recent suicide death of Philip Seymour Hoffman the obvious answer is no. Actors are not necessarily more developed humans. This confuses me because I feel that if I had those skills I would be amazing.

The thing is I am really good at what they are not, so what we each want is what the other person has. Ultimately it’s a synthesis of emotional and intellectual power.

For me then the path forward is practicing feeling, practicing connecting at a deep emotional level to myself and others. Psychedelic entactogens are a great tool in this regard. So is dreams, and meeting lots of people and observing my emotions in the engagement process.

So I believe my dream taught me an important lesson and gave me the answer to the original question. The answer still feels fuzzy, but I feel at the least I am aware of the areas I need to look….or rather feel. However resolving that inner fear/insecurity though Is probably another matter that I haven’t yet got too appropriately,

Self betterment is a process of uncovering rather than gaining

Having been interested in personal development for a long time I keep coming upon a concept that I believe desperately needs a re-frame.

It appears that most peoples perspective on self-development is that it is a process of gaining something you didn’t have before. If you were fearful and insecure you gained confidence through self work. Or perhaps if you were sad/depressed you gained joy/happiness or is you had shame you gained honor. Perhaps someone who was amoral acquired integrity.

The fundamental underlying theme is that we are creatures of lack that need to gain or add something to ourselves in order to become better that didn’t exist before. Much like learning a new trait or gaining a new ability or acquiring new knowledge as this is how we generally conceive of the process of betterment and self-improvement.

I feel that this perspective is wholly misleading and fundamentally deceitful. It puts the emphasis on the external and creates the frame that the self is inherently unworthy and needs to gain worth through gaining new attributes.

A more accurate perspective or frame is one that makes the exact opposite assumption.

Souls are inherently confident the problem is that fear and insecurity was added and layered on top of that confidence. Souls are inherently happiness and sadness depression is something that is gained or added. You inherently are honor shame is something that is acquired after the fact. Souls inherently have integrity it is when mal-adapted insecurities occur it can create amorality. Souls are inherent relaxed, it is merely that stress and tension were added.

The process of self-development is fundamentally then a process of uncovering/removing/letting go of “negative” things that were added and tainted the soul so to speak. The soul is inherently worthy on the inside although often we may not feel that way on the outside.

The distinction between what the core is on the inside, versus the ideas beliefs/thoughts/feelings we have of ourselves on the outside is critically important.

Judeo-christianity has really had a profound effect in this regard with the belief that man is inherent evil and flawed. It purports that grace is gained rather than something that is an inherent part of the self. It is not wonder that Darwinism and Freudianism philosophically take the same stance that nature is inherently flawed/selfish/brutish since the latter came out of the former.

To undo the damage of this style of thinking will require a paradigm shift in terms of how we understand and perceive the process of self development.

Emotionally speaking it would be analogous to wiping the mud off or energetically letting go of attachments to “negative” emotions. A process of uncovering the diamond and realizing your own inherent self worth.

The struggle is that the inherent goodness is buried quite deep in most people. In fact few are even consciously aware that it it exists deep within themselves because there is so much nasty stuff in the way that scares most people off. It is like we have to go through Dante’s hell followed by going up purgatory (from purging) mountain to get to heaven.

Purging is a good word and often those taking ayahuasca feel the vomiting helps facilitate emotional purging. Personally I find purging/dumping from the center of my being or the lower Dantien very effective.

Three-Dantiens

This is why the process of moving through negative/painful/unpleasant emotions is so important. It is only by going through them and getting to the roots that we can let them go.

The idea of “dumping” just like our body removes waste is incredibly important. Move through and than release so the inner light can come out.

Connecting and then nurturing those deeper feelings of self-worth and love are the next critically important step.

In summary the transformational process goes like this:

  1. Become aware of negative emotions as sensation in the body
  2. Move away from thoughts about “negative” emotion the reasons for it, blah, blah, regard it as pure energy instead
  3. Move into and through negative emotion to the root most acute part
  4. Then let it melt away, dissolve, dump it or purge
  5. Connect with the inner peace and then nurture and grow it

Nothing new is gained, merely what is, is brought forth from the depths of the inner self.