24. CONSIDER THIS: IF YOU ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT YOURSELF TOO QUICKLY AND YOU MAY BE IN DENIAL
How quickly do you answer questions about your behavior, your reactions or your responses?
During not only my training as a therapist but also over the years of seeing clients, I came to realize that we often answer questions about ourselves far too quickly. Usually we answer what we think is being required of us. And we often answer in order to seem clever and competent.
Yesterday I posted a Blog post which asked the question, ‘Do you waste time comparing yourself to others?’
The quick and obvious answer was either a yes or no.
However, if you took a little longer to consider the broader aspect of the question, you may have realized that in reality, we do all compare ourselves to one another. Usually this starts in childhood.
If you have siblings, I bet you that to this day, you will still be comparing yourself to your siblings. And if you had parents that made comparisons between you and you siblings then your levels of comparison would be quite understandable. Then of course there were your teachers and your schoolmates who would have continued the cycle of comparison via exam results and so on.
Later the lurking choice as to whether you are you intellectually competent to go to college or University, or whether your parents could afford to send you to tertiary education or whether you had to leave school early, all adds to comparing yourself to others.
Later in life questions with regards your success usually revolves around comparisons: Have you made the right career and partner choices? Are you successful or are your siblings and their partners more successful then you? And the list of questions can go on.
Basically, we live in a society that is performance driven whether we like it or not.
And as we get older there is that other haunting question that hovers throughout most of our lives. It’s that question that I hope you will all answer with a smile on your face – ‘Has your life been a waste?’
There are many articles on the internet about how we do actually compare ourselves to others:
Mark Manson for example (http://markmanson.net/measure-your-life) writes, “As humans, we’re wired for comparison. It’s an inevitable facet of our being. We are constantly trying to gauge how we measure up to those around us.
That guy has a better car than me. She is taller than me, but I’m prettier. I wonder how much money Bob makes and if his wife spends it all. Gosh, I wish the people at work listened to me the same way they listen to Jake.
Comparison and the drive for status is an innate part of our nature and that’s unlikely to change any time soon. But what we can change is the basis of those comparisons and the yardstick that we use to compare ourselves with others”.
Mark Manson is right – check the yardstick which you use to compare yourself.
So, I’m not suggesting to those of you who did comment and answer my blog question yesterday that you were either wrong or right. I am only too grateful that you took the time to comment.
You may of course be one of the lucky ones and you may really really not compare yourself to others.
But for those of you who do find yourselves comparing, or those of you who might even do it unconsciously, then I would suggest and I repeat, ‘Watch yourself like a hawk’. Try not to answer questions too quickly in case they have a deeper meaning that you haven’t quite thought of.
Through my step-by-step relationship knowledge system I hope to encourage you to think more deeply. I hope to encourage you to get to know yourself a lot better because once you understand your knee-jerk reactions and behavioural patterns and habits, you will make better choices to suit your life goals.
Note: © 2014 Information Copyright Deidré Wallace
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