A friend was recently diagnosed with Hypertension, known to most as a physical ailment. So he was in for a rude surprise when the physician advised him to consult a psychiatrist.
“The doc seems to have lost it. He thinks my husband is in acute depression. I am so worried.” The spouse’s reaction was justified as even the thought of a mental condition would freak out any of us.
The irony is that this particular family seemed to have it all: Rich, Successful, Compassionate, enjoying life to the core. It is easy to feel jealous of their king size lifestyle. So it was surprising to see the other side of the coin when what was witnessed most was their flourishing bank balance, a beautifully blessed life with lavish vacation trips, luxurious apartment, fashionable outfits and so on. No one could have ever imagined the amount of stress someone with a seemingly perfect life could be undergoing.
May be it’s not as perfect as it seems, may be something somewhere is amiss. Many young people complain of stress and anxiety these day, stemming out of financial and personal insecurity. But not many ask themselves this question.
Why Do I Feel So Insecure?
The reasons can be many. It takes some serious introspection to figure out what’s feeding a sense of insecurity inside your otherwise perfectly curated life.
Feeling Responsible: Men are particularly burdened with these thoughts all the time. Perhaps that is how they are raised, conditioned to assume responsibility for a number of people.
“My family is dependent on me for everything. I have so many responsibilities. I need to earn more. How much is enough? Kid’s future is not secure. I have no job security!” Common fears that grip almost the entire population barring a lucky few who either have made loads of money or have figured that money should not be allowed to run their life.
There will never be enough money. We need to take a decision if we want to spend our lifetime chasing a butterfly that takes pleasure in making us miserable.
Comparisons: One of the key reasons why so many of us feel insecure. Whenever there is a comparison, we start feeling so small as compared to others, which results in low self-esteem and our mind starts losing control over our thoughts. Rational thinking is replaced by “How can I get there faster”.
It does take hard work to not let yourself be affected by other people’s success or may I say, material acquisitions. The best way to escape the comparison trap would be to learn how to accept and appreciate who we are and where we stand. You may be good in some aspects, and I may be in some others. Comparison would anyway lead to negative conclusions, mostly about your own self.
Public Opinion: As human beings, everybody wants to be socially accepted, wanting to meet social standards of a modern, affluent lifestyle. But often while looking at ourselves through the public eye, we tend to ignore our own vision. It is when we start paying more attention to how others want to see us, rather than who we are; that we are surely reduced to insecure antibodies surviving on people’s care and attention.
Respecting one’s own identity is a habit we all need to inculcate. People would either like you or hate you. No one can keep everyone happy all the time. But if we are true to ourselves, at least one person will be truly happy.
Fear of Failure: Fear of failing can stop us from succeeding in life and at work. This fear often holds us back to come out of our secure and comfort zone. And when met with tough circumstances, we start feeling insecure, inviting the stress monster to come live with us.
Neither failure nor success is guaranteed, having faith and giving our best shot is all we can do. And good things will follow.
Seeking Virtual Approval: Social networking sites have brought us closer but have also created a void in people’s mind. It has become a necessity to be socially active. But when you want to post every single thought on your facebook wall….’I am sad’, ‘having tea’ , ‘on vacation’, ‘my dog got fever’, you crave for maximum likes and comments, in short you are seeking attention from people you don’t even count as your true friends.
And failing to get either fills you with negative thoughts. “What the heck, no one cares that my baby Bruno got fever!” Looking for acceptance at the wrong places would only do more harm than good.
If we really sit and think about it, we are the ones who feed our insecurities and let them grow out of hand. We let our negative thoughts sabotage our happiness while it should be the other way round.