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What Do I Have to Do With The Way Others Treat Me?
Hi Dr Paul,This is my first post in the Mailbag and I want to make it a good one! Let's get to it.
I'd say 80% of my problems in life stem from a fear of what others are thinking of me. Intellectually I can say that other people are outside of my boundary and thus uncontrollable, but I still feel a stabbing emotional pain when I get the feeling I've offended someone or that they just don't like me. This problem arises again and again and I have yet to discover a system or develop a new positive belief to help me deal with it.
When I apply Observing Ego skill to it, I observe that this belief doesn't serve me at all and that it's sorta ridiculous, yet it persists in the back of my mind and keeps popping up. Am I battling some kind of safety-in-the-group instinct (e.g. they don't like me, I'm excluded from the group, I won't survive without the group)? Or is it just a plain ol' negative self-image? Since discovering this technology it has felt like a new, robust positive self-image is clashing with an old, outdated, yet strongly rooted negative self-image. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!
Wow man, what a great, to-the-point question. It's fantastic, and I also want to say it was a real pleasure meeting you in person and having you for the Quantum Psychology live program a month ago or so!
First off, it sounds like you are already knowledgeable about some of the specific skills we build in our programs - the two most notable for this concern being Observing Ego that you mention, and Boundary skill.
Observing Ego is THE prime core skill of personal growth, and without it, we cannot change or grow as people. We can't learn ANYTHING new in behavior. In fact, it is THE singular cause of all human REGRET - can you believe it? When we define words so precisely and root them in psychological science, they then retain a great deal of power and practicality for everyday life.
In other words, Observing Ego is the ability to step outside yourself, look down at situations, and ADVISE yourself in real-time, like being your own coach or brother or mentor - sort of like "self-talk." And one of the best ways to use it is in asking yourself questions like you are now doing so well. So you actually have the most important and first personal growth skill MASTERED here.
From there you are right - boundaries are needed - a boundary is like a SHIELD that blocks stress - which is always negative emotion coming from OTHER PEOPLE. If it gets into you, then it gives you a drop in self-esteem, and essentially makes you UNHAPPY. That's independent of gender by the way.
But there's something worse that stress can do than lower your self-esteem. If it is especially toxic and of a certain category in life - namely the areas of women or work - then the stress is also tinged with SHAME.
Shame is an assault on something deeper than self-esteem. It's an attack on your very identity, depending on gender then that will be a drop in either masculinity if you are a man, or femininity if one is a woman.
In most cases, there were blocks to these two things for men developing and thriving in the first place - masculinity and self-esteem. When you start out with a "low tank" of these, because of bullying in childhood, or parental abuse or neglect, or a lack of friendship and caring from others, or falling in with the wrong crowd in secondary school, it kind of sets you up for "being behind" on full strength and power to then exercise great boundaries later.
Think of the "boundary shield" as being a bit like a spaceship's "force field" in a sci fi movie. It needs "energy" to stay strong and powerful against an attack.
So we need to build that too, and we do so for the area of women using the Omega Male Program at http://www.menspsychology.com/courses/miwomen, the MMP program at http://www.menspsychology.com/courses/miman, and of course the Masculine Intelligence in Personal Boundaries Program itself at http://www.menspsychology.com/courses/s ... learn-more
I generally think of the "safety in a group" thing as being a deep FEMININE instinct, whereas for men when they feel bad about being excluded from a group its more of a sadness about male friendship - that feeling of "being part of a team that's making great things happen" - like being on a sports team, or a business team. And so doing those kinds of things yield great results in making you feel better in that area - like starting a business with some buddies, or joining a sports team, not individual sports.
The latter things then amplify your level of expressed and felt masculinity, which empowers your boundary significantly, which then protects against stress and retains your self-esteem too, which then further powers your boundary - and you feel less and less "slighted" by others.
Also we sometimes do a boundary effect that we talk about in both MindOS Mastery at http://www.menspsychology.com/courses/migrowth and in the new Quantum Psychology Program at http://www.menspsychology.com/the-quant ... gy-program called PROJECTION.
It's where we take negative beliefs about ourselves (which came from negative experiences of being hurt or shamed by others) and then put them out onto others who really DON'T feel that negative way about us. Then we see it coming BACK at us when really they didn't intend any harm. Some might call this "being oversensitive" which certainly can be a feature of having gaps or holes in one's boundary in general - but the specific thing that does is to INDUCE others to actually start treating us negatively when they didn't before.
Then it looks like people naturally drift into certain roles that our own PROJECTION set up for them - like being down on ourselves etc. Which is why the self-helpy types always say that we "teach others how to treat us."
Now you see exactly WHY.
So do masculinizing activities in your life the way we talk about in the MMP, and do assertiveness and courage like we talk about in the MindOS and the Quantum, work those boundaries and start treating yourself the way you want to be treated and deserve to be treated.
Then others will fall into that NEW role in your life - teammates and friends, mutually respecting colleagues.
Then you're on your way.
It's all in the Mature Masculine Power Program at:
Observing Ego is highlighted in MindOS Mastery at:
and all of human courtship is in the Omega Male Program at:
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