Treat your Neighbor as you would treat yourself.
Really??? Now that’s a really bad idea.
Do you know what’s going on inside this head? Do you know what’s going on inside your head. I do and most of the time it just not pretty.
That voice is a collection of ideas, opinions about one’s self. It nags, whines and scolds expressing itself by reminding you every day exactly what it thinks of you. It’s an EGO!
There are basically two kinds of ego structures. People who think that they are a terrific and BETTER that you, or people who believe they are losers. Think about the comic strip Peanuts. Lucy in Peanuts has an exaggerated sense of her own importance and right to rule others.
Lucy complains about everything. Lucy people have a ‘superior” ego. She’s a bit of a narcissist. Lucy might say to her Linus. I have neither the time nor the crayons to explain this to you.
But Charlie Brown who feels inferior, is convinced he is fatally flawed, always trying to make other characters feel better and is not sure he is going to survive his current crisis. Being the underdog is his job. My husband says that I have an inferiority complex, but I’m sure, it isn’t a very good one.
Imagine if people could hear what we are thinking… it would be incredibly boring —that head chatter, is like a broken recording machine. habitually thoughts that cycle through the mind. All day it offers a running commentary on your mistakes and failures. If you are a narcissist it criticizes , judges and creates revenge fantasies about other people.But people do want a better life. Why do you suppose there are so many self help books around. The thing is though, that the people who really need them , won’t read them.
Where does it all come from, you ask? Your body/mind and heart are designed to keep you alive. That means that your perception, your first impression is registered in your lizard brain – which can set off a Three alarm siren if it perceives REJECTION! Your primitive brain, which you need to survive – doesn’t know much. It just reacts to stimuli. This alarm system is there because When you are an infant, you must be accepted by the clan or you could die. All that cooing and giggling is a con job. The lizard brain is trying to stop your family from eating you. Those big eyes and big head, when you are a baby it is survival of the cute-est.
People are born with an open heart, but family members have emotional baggage and attitudes that hurt children, even when we love them. What grows is a constellation of defenses to minimize and protect us against the unhealthy habits of our relations. Emotional Trauma is the gift that keeps on giving
Here’s an example. Years ago , when I was coming our of a grocery store, a little boy put a quarter into the machine and got a pink rectangle that he popped into his mouth. But the pink rectangle wasn’t gum, it was an eraser. His aunt and mother looked down and Auntie said, Gary I swear that you are a dumb as you look. Abaracadaba! Gary now thinks he’s dumb and ugly to boot. But the awful part he won’t remember WHY.
Ok it’s not hopeless. Your first step to refine your Emotional Intelligence is to grow more awareness, observation. In every mind/heart there is “an observer” that can watch feelings, behaviors and ideas as they arise. With practice, this deep self can detach and objectively observe: an incident, our interpretation of an event, and our reaction. The cycle of just reacting moves to understanding when someone can reflect on what emotions are connected to the event. Reflection may even reveal “why” we responded the way we did, and that leads to an opportunity for change. You can train your brain to ‘not believe’ self criticism. You don’t have to believe everything you think.
C. Lee Guerette