Appreciate your honesty so much - very courageous steps and I applaud that. It's not easy to own up. But I think these are the first steps of overcoming this: admitting it - AND accepting ourselves even with our insecurities, not hating ourselves because of it.
So, the thought chapter 2 opens with is that we all have insecurities - it is a part of being human. But how much do those insecurities limit us or steal our quality of life? And that's the big reason to try to deal with this (besides just how crappy it feels).
Beth gives a specialist's definitions of insecurity [Wow, did I see myself in more than a phrase or two!]:
"a profound sense of self-doubt - a deep feeling of uncertainty about our basic worth and our place in the world...chronic self-consciousness, along with a chronic lack of confidence in ourselves and anxiety about relationships...constant fear of rejection and a deep uncertainty about whether his or her own feelings and desires are legitimate" (qtd in Moore 17)
A lot of that resonated with me. She makes a few other points that I thought were note-worthy. It really is this complicated mix of self-doubt, self-sabotage, doubting ourselves - and doubting God about ourselves.
One thing she said that is also worth noting is that insecurity can look like self-consciousness and it can look like confidence. Often, perfectionism a cover for insecurity. We think of someone who is self-conscious as willowy, weak, passive. We don't want to be her. We are too proud to be her. But all self-consciousness is is being pre-occupied with self - a constant self-awareness - which really can look like confidence at times, too! So, pride and self-centeredness are indications of insecurity too.
Here is another part she mentions about the whole 'self-consciousness' thing:
"Chronically conscious of self...acute self-awareness and a pre-occupation with self, no matter how it is externalized in life...she is ordinarily more aware of herself than she tends to be of any other person in the room. Whether she feels inferior or superior, she takes a frequent inventory of her place in the space..."
Yeah, I get this...just like an obsessive pre-occupation with self. It's not 100% of the times and it flares up in some environments more than others, but taking a 'frequent inventory of her place in the space'...yeah, that's me.
I want be the girl who is just 'self-forgetful.' She is so absorbed with the moment and the people around her that she is not even aware of herself. That, to me, screams, confidence - and more so because she is not even trying to.
OK, if I haven't overwhelmed you yet, here are some questions she puts out as sort of a self-inventory of insecurity. You may not fit all of them...but a 'yes' to even some could show that there may be an insecurity issue. Which is OK!!! We all have them. But let's be honest and DEAL with it!!!
OK, here are the questions (not an exhaustive list, just a few that she mentions):
- Do I cry easily?
- Do I avoid the spotlight in social situations?
- Do I have a strong desire to make amends whenever I think I have done something wrong?
- If someone gets angry with me, do I have a hard time not thinking about it?
- Do I sometimes feel anxious for no apparent reason?
- Does it hurt my feelings when I learn that someone doesn't like me?
- Do I fear that my husband might leave me for someone else?
The final part of this chapter probably nailed me the most accurately. Here is the specialist's definition as quoted by Beth:
"The insecure person also harbors unrealistic expectations about love and relationships...often unconscious[ly]...creates a situation in which being disappointed and hurt in relationships is almost inevitable. Ironically...they are usually unaware of how they are unwittingly accomplices in creating their own misery" (23).
And here is her comment that completed resonated:
"We can be so blessed in certain relationships that our unrealistic expectations often seem met, and therefore, reasonable. We can get away with thinking we're secure people because, for a time, we have the important things just like we want them. But then change happens, and suddenly, we are thrown for a severe emotional loop. We realize we weren't secure. We were spoiled."
Ummm, yeah...me in a nutshell.
OK, I have given you enough to think about! Here is the question for chapter 2:
What part of the definition or description of insecurity resonated most with you and why?
I will give my answer in the comment section. I know this is hard. But it is GOOD!!!