Saturday, March 24, 2007


I came across something of a revelation in thought recently. It's not something entirely new to me, I first came across it about 2 years ago; a book claiming that social anxiety is the product of an increased ability to think of yourself in terms of the third person. An interesting hypothesis I thought at the time, and one that could be partially true, but it was nothing more than free-flowing thoughts making their way around my mind without any real depth of knowledge, experience or inclination. So that is what it remained, an incomplete thought that I could possibly explore further when then new peaces reveled themselves.

Then something happened. I wish, for the life of me, I could remember what it was, but I can't. Maybe I was reading a book, or maybe it was some kind of social experience, or maybe God came down from Heaven and said 'Mico. I come forth, with a great treasure. You are to hold the secret of social anxiety as I present it to thou.' I'm pretty sure the latter didn't happen, and neither am I going to claim to hold the secret to social anxiety, but somewhere in the past couple of months I was suddenly overcome by an understanding that I never previously possesed. It was the understanding, that for my entire life, I have been acting not for myself, but for the image of myself. The image that I perceive others to hold. An image from a third person viewpoint.

I have no idea what I'm talking about. My thoughts come in waves, rippling through my body like a tidal emotion. I long for them to speak to me, but they don't. Instead, I feel them. The choice to decipher these thoughts is left up to me, and if you bare with me, then that is what I'm going to attempt to do now.

You see, when you perceive yourself in the third person, looking at yourself from an external viewpoint, the viewpoint of your peers, your enemies, your Gods, or whoever, you are encouraging the idea that you are acting to please. 'Acting' and 'please' are two important words here. From this viewpoint you can only do right if the audience is approving. But what happened to your own approval? And this is exactly where self-esteem comes in! You need to be able to stand there and approve of your own actions. Anytime you give that decision over to someone else, you're giving them all the power you have and you leave yourself with nothng.

The truth is, it's OK to be wrong. It's OK if someone dissaproves of your actions, so long as you approve of them. Take yourself away from the third person and ask yourself, what do you want. Refrain from asking yourself 'what would look cool?', or 'will my friends approve of this?'. Ask yourself 'what do I want?.' It's not selfish. And neither is it uncool. In fact you'll find it to be the exact opposite. Individuality and the confidence to display it is an extremely attractive quality. If you have strong opinions, or act in ways that some people find offensive, some people will hate you. But so what? People will hate you anyway for being whatever way you are. Everyone is hated by someone.

Wow, struggle is the word of the day. This isn't a good attempt at getting this one out of my head and into an understandable language. I obviously need to go away and think about this one, but I thought I'd lay the seed for thought. What you sow, you reap.

What do you want.

Oh, and wait. Just so happens that I was reading an article this very morning relating nicely to this subject. Check it out at Violent Acres.