“In Touch”: Conditioned to try to control how we appear to others. Part one

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Our deeper tension, however, is chronic and psychological.
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We are conditioned to try to control how we appear to others.
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We want to maintain an acceptable image within our “tribe,” whether that tribe is our immediate family, a circle of friends, or our larger community.
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When we scratch the surface of a well-educated modern human, we find a tribal member.
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There is a biological fear behind this concern for self-image.
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Outcasts never fared well in tribal societies—shunning meant almost certain death.
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When I explore my clients’ social anxieties around acceptance and approval, there is always an underlying fear of rejection.
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Once they uncover this layer, I will ask, “Then what will happen?”
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They inevitably discover a fear of being abandoned, becoming homeless, and eventually dying.
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In most cases a secure middle-class lifestyle does not seem to lessen this primal fear.
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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Laurie Schuler on May 27, 2017 at 6:22 pm

    I think society has groomed us to be someone we are not. As a child I was taught to only speak when spoken to. Not to offer my options to sit a certain way, to be proper at all times. I was always afraid that if I did not do these things someone might think i’ll of me. It caused great anxiety, frustration and self doubt. I was painfully shy also. As a young adult I learned i could be myself and it didn’t matter, Others will judge no matter what. I decided I was happier being myself and I came out of my shell. I honestly do not worry about what others think. However I do maintain and practice some of the positive lessons I learned as a child,

  2. I am so delighted that you are embracing this book once more Marty! I come back to it again and again and it really brings me home … into awareness and my body. ❤️

  3. Nice response Laurie, this post has garnered a big reaction to those I support.
    Fear of abandonment is common.

    Thanks Val, I was asked about out inner critic and In Touch explained it fluidity. Then i kept reading and wondered how I missed such wisdom.

    Thanks for the responses

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