Although some people like to view themselves as being independent and that other people have no affect on who they are, this is nothing more than an illusion. Human beings are interdependent and this means that one’s self image is influenced by other people.
One might not be aware of this fact or they may try do deny it, but that doesn’t change anything. When one thinks about other people influencing who they are, they might come to the conclusion that this is a bad thing and it can be.
But at the same time, it can also be a good thing and something that enhances their life. It will all depend on how one is being influenced by others. For example, if one finds that another person is having a negative effect on their life, then it is going to be important for them to keep their distance.
Just as if one meets someone who has a positive effect on their life, the desire is going to arise to spend more time around them. In these situations, one will need to be in touch with how they feel so that they know what the best option is for them to take.
So one could meet someone they have known for a while and they don’t even need to think about how they are going to behave; as they just act a certain way. This could reflect how they usually behave or it could just reflect how they behave around the person they are with.
Through acting in this way, one might feel connected to who they are. As a result of this, one is not going to have any kind of resistance to how they are behaving.
They are who they want to be and being around the other person allows them to be acknowledged and validated. The other person will then be a positive influence on their life and someone who allows them to be themselves.
While a seed might have the potential to become a tree or a flower, it is still reliant on water and it will need the right sunlight for instance. Without these elements it won’t grow; it will just decay.
And as human beings are interdependent, they are the same, so unless one is around the right people, people who will shine the light on their potential or what is good about them, then it won’t be possible for these parts to see the light of day.
They might simply remain as hidden potentials and instead of one realising what is good about them, they might end up being caught up on what is not good about them or what they have been ‘told’ is not good. One is then a seed that has never experienced the suns warmth and has only experienced the freezing temperatures of the night.
Now, when one is around someone who brings out the best in them it is not going to be a problem. One will not feel the need to act in a certain way or to be someone they are not. They are being affirmed for who they are and this is going to be liberating.
However, when one is around someone and they feel the need to behave in ways that don’t validate who they are, it is going to be disempowering. One is not going to be able to be themselves; they are going to have to put on an act.
Part Of Life
It is not always going to be possible for one to be themselves around everyone, but if they feel the need to be someone they are not around the people they are closest to, then it is going to be problem.
So if one finds that they act in certain ways around others and therefore see themselves in a certain way, it is going to be important for them to realise that this is not something that just happens. On one side there is what is taking place within them and on the other side is how the other person treats them.
One might be aware of how another person’s behaviour is affecting how they see themselves or they might not but even if they are not aware, they are still having an effect. And if one has always been around the same people, they might just feel limited or stuck and not know why.
However, if they were to spend some time away from someone or a certain group of people, they might start to experience life in a different way. And in a way that allows them to feel more empowered and capable for example.
If one wants to know what another person expects of them, they will need to pay attention to their behaviour and to how they talk to them. It is said that if one is told something for long enough, they will start to believe it and then it will become who they are.
So if one is treated as though they are capable, important, intelligent and kind for instance, then there is a chance that this is how they will see themselves as time passes. And if one is treated as if they are incapable or worthless, then this can end up becoming their identity.
This is also means that one will have to be aware of the expectations that they have of others, as if they are limiting, they could be stopping the people around them from growing.
One reason why someone would have such limited expectations of others is due to what they haven’t faced within themselves. When one doesn’t face their own limits and pushes them out of their awareness, they will start to see them in other people.
They then end up pointing the finger at others instead of facing what is in conflict within them. And if one puts up with the expectations of others that hold them back, it might reflect how they were treated during their childhood years. As what happened during these years is incredibly powerful when it comes to shaping the self image one has as an adult.
Being treated in these ways could be what feels familiar at a deeper level. It will be important for one to pay attention to how they feel around the people in their life and to decide how they want to see themselves.
Not everyone is going to validate how one sees themselves, but as long as one knows who they are it doesn’t matter. And as one comes to value themselves, they will begin to attract people who can support them for who they are and who will allow them to just be.
The assistance of a therapist, healer or some kind of coach might be needed here. It will all depend on what ones challenges are.
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Oliver J R Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.