Low Self Esteem: So you’re aware that your nose isn’t as straight as you’d hoped it would be or your thighs rub together when you walk. You look in the mirror and all you see is the mole that makes a triangle on your face or the strands of childish hair covering your forehead. You begin emanating that outward sense of awkwardness with your body and your inner self, until you eventually believe that all everyone sees are your flaws. This harbors a deep, underlying sense of insecurity which may make you spiteful and jealous towards others. When you’re in a relationship with someone and a cute girl or guy walks by, you’re immediately aware that the said passerby is “prettier” than you or is wearing a much better outfit than your current coveralls and T-shirt and you begin to wonder if your significant other realizes it too. This is the cycle of insecurity and the moment you come to the terms with the fact that you have low self-esteem, is the exact moment you should try your best to counteract it.
Solution: When you find something negative about someone else to say, stop and understand that the only reason you are jealous is because you are uncomfortable and unhappy with yourself. Take a mirror and stare at yourself – acknowledge all the “flaws,” you think you have then schedule a plastic surgery visit. Okay I’m kidding. Do nothing of that sort. Acknowledge them; point them out, cry about them if you have to and then move on. You’re not going to get anywhere if you ignore how you feel and keep it cooped up inside. You have to accept that they are a part of you, something that makes you different and quirky. If it’s a really serious self-esteem issue then it’s better to talk to someone about it, go to counseling or support group. Sign up for some classes or workshops on how to accept and love yourself. If you keep worrying about all the other girls or guys out there wanting someone else then you’re going to lose the one you have and you’ll forget the most important thing – that they chose YOU.
Projection: The psychological phenomenon of Sigmund Freud’s Projection principle is simple. It is a defense mechanism whereby someone attributes their undesirable thoughts, feelings, ideas to someone else. It is the expelling of your very own obscene or shameful characteristics by attributing them to another person. When you complain about someone’s negative characteristics or find something unpleasant to say about someone else, you are usually the one who harbors these characteristics. This is why you are able to recognize it so easily and find fault with it so quickly. This also occurs if you’ve done something you consider to be wrong like secretly flirting with another guy or even cheating on your significant other – then you project all of this onto your partner and accuse/suspect/assume that they are cheating or flirting with other people as well. This engraves a deep sense of insecurity within yourself.
“Know thyself,” – The Oracle of Delphi.
Admit your mistakes. Don’t grow into an old and miserable person surrounded by cats, making fun of everyone who passes by the window. Be mature about the situation – if you’re cheating or flirting then just own up to it. If you’re not happy in the relationship then leave. Projecting your own mistakes one someone else just makes you insecure and more likely to fall into the cycle of self-hate. Before condemning others for their flaws you should take it upon yourself to seek guidance for the things that make you unhappy. If you think someone is lying to you all the time then chances are you are the pathological fibber. Whatever you cannot accept about yourself, you will blame or project it towards others. Correct your flaws and you will see the world differently.
Past Experiences: This extends deeper than the aforementioned issues because it is one that can govern them both. Past issues with rejection, betrayal, abandonment and an abnormal childhood can subtly influence our everyday lives. We tend to be insecure about people leaving or about someone abusing our trust because we were subject to these experiences at a young age. A history of abuse whether physical, verbal, emotional or sexual can delineate a path of insecurity that may appear to be unchangeable.
Solution: I am not a professional psychological counselor but I do know that the first step in overcoming this is acceptance. Denial of the past won’t change anything. You have to face your past and your fears that history will repeat itself and make an effort to see beyond it. The second step is forgiveness. We have to forgive the people who wronged us, and forgive ourselves along the way. Every time you find that fear creeping up on you then try your best to shut it out. You are not making a better life for yourself and a new future by being bitter and insecure about yourself and your relationships. Talk to your significant other about your problems and seek professional help. It’s not taboo to confide in a psychologist or counselor – you’re taking the first step to ripping off those bondage chains from your past. Be strong enough to fight for that freedom.