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


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

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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