phase 1, day 29 - more clarity
July 18, 2019•390 words
No dose today.
This morning, I'm noticing with heightened clarity the back foot that I'm constantly taking in society in general. I'm always in an "amber alert", expecting traumatic experiences in interpersonal encounters. I notice that even with my family I feel threatened, with parents not quite acknowledging my autonomy or my ability to overcome challenges myself. I know that the way forward is to perceive their worry and anxiety as indicative of their own problems, not mine.
I notice threats perceived when seeing others' creative work, as undermining my own sense of self and my own abilities. I notice my defensiveness in protecting what I see as core elements of my personal value, such as being technologically savvy or creative. These things are so precious to me that any sense of competition fills me with envy, hate, defensiveness. I know the way forward is to be confident in my own abilities and to enjoy others' contributions to my fields.
I notice all these things and remind myself consciously that I am my own person, and try to access a personal strength and identification rather than comparison to others. I approach interpersonal encounters as threatening by default, and rather than being able to take pleasure in the company of others, I perceive them as a problem to confront and overcome. This leads me to almost totally ignore who they are, waiting for them to finish talking so I can assert myself as someone with a retort and with something interesting to say, to bolster my own perception of myself. It's not even really about how they perceive me. I'm not really even thinking much about that.
The process must be conscious at this point. It's hard sometimes, to backslide and to regress back to automatic thoughts, but I remind myself that the process is going really well, and that this is all new territory for me. The goal is to be recapture and claim permanently that feeling that the world is neutral, and that I am a part of it, and can contribute myself freely while accepting others as they are.
I'm thinking of writing a "prayer" or "poem" to recite every night before bed and every morning, that hits upon all these key thoughts I notice in myself, to reinforce them consciously, and to maintain a habit of them.