I had this talk with a friend some days ago, he has forever been wanting to change this aspect of himself (natures gift) that he didn’t like rather than accepting it and wait for nature to take its course.
My advice was a question; What made you see this factor as a limitation?
Him: I don’t know Divine, I just don’t like it. I have used all kinds of medicines, some made it even worst while others brought about no change.
ME: From my experience, its not that you don’t like it, its because you don’t like how people see you to be because you ‘think’ they feel disgusted when they see you.
ME: Who made people’s judgement a reason for your happiness? Who gave them the rights to decide who you should be or who you shouldn’t be?
The answer to these questions is YOU.
You gave them these rights. You have been carried out by Social Norms that you have lost track of your own uniqueness.
As a person, we should consider this two things, Ourselves as an individual and the world around us called The Other. Hence The Other is any other thing other than our individual selves. This then opens our eyes on this fact,
» Our sense of self is shaped by our awareness of the ‘Other’, or the world around ourselves. However, it is the language of the other that forms our deepest thought » Says Jacques Lacan.
In order to proceed, we need to understand the fact that our perception is the backbone for reality. This means, how we see the world or how we choose to relate with The Other will fully define the life we create for ourselves and the mode in which we will choose to live. To a further end it might even define our truth or what we call truth. This is because,
« Truth can only be tolerated if we discover it ourselves » by Fritz Pearls
From this then, we need to change how we perceive things by changing our inner psychic environment. This is because, it gives us the power to,
- interpret our environment or the Other and
- how to react to it
By controlling the inner psychic environment, we could readjust the way we react towards bad things, traffic, personal criticism such as looks, bad test results, etc. For it is said,
« No one can make you angry other than yourself »
The biologist call this « homeostasis » which is the ability to maintain emotional stability despite environmental changes. Hence everyone has to take direct responsibilities on how he/she acts and reacts regardless of what seems to be happening.
Later after full ownership of our inner self, you have to understand then the use of the « I » word, I don’t mean Ipod or Apple products here, but the ownership of self. From the Gestalt ownership method, the use of « I » in speech requires a full sense of ownership. For Example,we need to change from » I can’t do that » to » I won’t do that », « I should not watch that kind of movies » to « I won’t watch it » This shows the full or established ownership of feeling; emotions arise in and belong to me; I can’t blame someone or something else for my feelings.
With this personal responsibility comes the obligation to refuse to experience events, relationships, or situations that we know to be wrong to the authentic selves. We also have to beware of Society Norms. We may have acted under the assumption of its truth for so long that it just becomes automatically right. The Bible speaks of this too.
« Gestalt theory encourages us to write our own realities, write our own rules, determine our own personal opinions, philosophies, desires, and interest. As we increase our awareness of self accountability, self reliance and self insight, we will understand we are building our own truths and realities. » This is true to some extend but it hides the real truth behind it. I know there is nothing as self reliance but reliance in God for the strength to submit to Him and build my life in him. For from Him, you will find the strength not to follow what the world calls « Truth ».
Article by: Divine Ngocho Zumbi
BEng Civil and Structural Engineering.