Sunday, October 17, 2010

Desire to be successful

We all have some innate human desire to be successful or famous. But the attachments to these labels and what they mean in a social context have more to do with the desire than achieving our own personal feats.

Most people in this world want to be successful. Why? Some individuals may not be able to answer this question directly. Most people may give you an answer that is tied to their own personal goals. The actual reason why most want to be successful is because it validates them, giving them a true sense of belonging and acceptance by the masses, while guaranteeing acknowledgment. Being successful or famous will ensure (in modern society) that your name will be immortalized in history and that you cannot be replaced.

Being successful validates you because it makes you feel important. It proves to your psyche (sometimes fallaciously so) that everybody else who has attempted to achieve whatever you succeeded in has failed. This gives you a sense of value by signifying that you are unique and different from everybody else because you were successful in your respective arena. It also means that you will never be forgotten, that your name lives on. This is a very salient notion in modern society and is also crucial for psychological nurture.

Once you become successful and are in the spotlight it will allow you extend your social networks and people will receive you differently. Becoming successful may/may not make you famous but it will make you popular in the arena you succeed in. This gives you a special sense of belonging. Humans naturally gravitate towards popular individuals. Furthermore, successful people have a unique trait that the rest of the human populations desires and admires therefore the amount and duration of interactions with other people will increase dramatically; this confers a sense belonging. Since people usually want to be around successful individuals they tend to accept them; people who are successful usually have high rates of acceptance among different social groups.

Lastly most humans want to be successful in order to be acknowledged. Being successful will almost guarantee that you will be recognized. Everybody in life wants to be recognized no matter how grand or trivial the task. Being recognized will indirectly ensure belonging which are two very important requirements for psychological growth. Acknowledgment can be amplified and reach the next level which is being idolized. Being idolized means that you have almost reached a super human state (where most people regard you as Perfect, flawless, the best) which can be unhealthy. At this stage people have gone from admiring you to glorifying you.

God Bless this is Alex signing out!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Psychological underpinning

Human nature has developed different ways of compensating for flaws. Its quite interesting how most of our everyday behaviors have a psychological underpinning. Psyche plays a major role in our world and allow us to communicate or miscommunicate. Having a sister who is in the Psychology field has led me to be more appreciative and reverent of the field.

Observation is the key to understanding how crucial psychology is in influencing somebody's behaviors. Superficially inflating or protecting your ego through lying is one way that people compensate for their flaws. A possible scenario could be a girl lying about sexual contact; females usually fear being judged so they lie in order to avoid being judged. A past event may have inflicted psychological scarring that wasn't repaired and caused her to suffer from low self-value; she could have been abused at a young age. Therefore she sleeps around because she thinks that guys will give her value and make her feel better. The reality is that guys do not respect her and she becomes submissive by allowing guys to trample over her. For ladies out there listening: when you give yourself up, you give up your POWER! Guys will not value you, If YOU DONT VALUE YOURSELF! BOTTOM LINE! Usually its the best looking girls who have the lowest self esteem for various reasons.

Other ways of avoiding your insecurities is through injuring others' egos. A common example is one who constantly insults others, I would fathom a guess that the individual is attempting to alleviate their suffering from low self esteem by elevating their ego.

Another way that we as humans masquerade our flaws is through blaming others for our own failures. For example if I miss my interview because the bus was late, I will blame the transit system for not being on time; when in reality it is my fault because I did not leave early. Other times we may blame somebody else for something that is more permanent. A guy may blame his parents for not enrolling him in an academically challenging high school and causing his poor academic performance in college. We may not be able to change the past but we can develop habits and enhance skills in order to maximize our chances of academic success. However, blaming is easier because it preserves our pride and ego while covering our flaws and exposing others' flaws.

One of the most universal ways of escaping our flaws is through a defensive mechanism in which we are defensive and justify our behaviors. Take me for example I am a dancer; I would say I am a good dancer. Now somebody may have seen me perform on stage and criticize my dancing by telling me that I could have done a move better or that my count was off on stage. My first reaction is to preserve my ego and respond by saying "everybody else messed up, and you only saw me". Or I may say "no, I messed up because I only practiced the dance several times". Or lets say Im a a Hip Hop artist and a critic says that my music can be improved. My defense mechanism may be" you dont know what you are talking about" signifying that the person lacks expertise so they are fundamentally wrong. Even though they may have a valid point!

All of these scenarios play a dramatic role on who we are and how we respond to different psychological stimuli. Everybody is innately different and reacts differently to the same situations. This is the beauty of genetics and environment and how they shape our response to the same situations.

That’s it for now Peace Love Happiness, and faith!