There are some people who are able to be themselves, and while they can adapt, this is not something that always takes place. Not only do they have a sense of themselves, but more importantly, they will feel that it is safe for them to be themselves.
At times, they’re going to understand the importance of adapting to their environment and there will be other moments, when this won’t be the case. If one was unable to adapt, it would be just as much of a problem as if they were constantly adapting themselves to their environment.
So when one is in this position, they’re able to choose how they are going to act; it is not something they feel is out of their control. This is not to say that they will always be in control, but it is not going to be something that is always out of their control either.
Through this, one is going to be able to have a sense of self that is fairly consistent. They are not going to need to be a chameleon and therefore, someone that is constantly changing themselves in order to ‘fit in’ and to please others.
The People Around Them
So one is going to be themselves around the people they are close to in life and this is going to mean that their relationships are authentic and life affirming. There is then no need for one to be a certain way, and they can allow their true self to be revealed.
For some people, this is going to be how their life has always been and for others, this will be something they have gradually come to experience as time has passed. It will then be normal and the only thing some people have known, and for others, it may well have become normal, but they will know what it is like to live on the other side.
And because they have lived on the other side, they are going to have a deeper appreciation. They will know what it’s like to have no sense of self and to be who others want them to be or who they think other people want them to be.
When one has a sense of self that is week or nonexistent, they’re not going to have a consistent sense of themselves. There is the chance that this is what is normal and it could be the only thing they know.
It is then how life is and it could be seen as something they have to put up with for the rest of their life. To see life this way is not going to fill one with hope, it is only going to make one feel like a victim.
When one lives a life where they merge with the environment and lose themselves, it is not going to be enjoyable. It is going to be a life where one is used to compromising themselves and ignoring their wants and needs. How they feel is going to be irrelevant, because the feelings of others will take precedence.
The Human Chameleon
And while one might not know who they are going to be from one moment to the next, what they might be aware of, are the roles that they usually play around others. Tuning into other people is going to be something they are extremely good at. However, when it comes to tuning into their own needs, wants and feelings, it could be a real challenge.
In their mind, they are not saying: this is who I am, they are saying, who do you want me to be? This is going to mean that they are unable to just be, instead, they have to be on alert and aware of others people’s needs, wants and feelings.
The Half Life
To live this way is not going to be fulfilling or enable one to live their truth; it is going to be a life of frustration and compromise, where one constantly goes against their best interests. On one side, one has the need to live their truth, and on the other, one feels compelled to please other people.
What this shows is that one is experiencing inner conflict and this is not something they can overlook, as it is controlling their whole life. Being aware of other people’s needs is not the problem, what is the problem is when one is constantly ignoring their own needs in order to take care of the needs of others.
If one could put their needs first without feeling uncomfortable, then this is surely what would take place. But when one ignores who they are to please others, it is because this is what feels safe. So if one was to put their needs first, it is going to trigger the inner experience of being abandoned. This inner experience could match up with what is taking place externally or it might have nothing to do with what is taking place externally.
This will then lead to the feeling that one is going to die and as one is an adult, it can be hard to understand why this is. As an adult, one is unlikely to die if another person leaves then. If they were a baby or a child, then how one feels would make sense.
What this is likely to show is that while one has physically grown up, their emotional body is still responding to life as if they were a child or even a baby. One is then not seeing life through the eyes of an adult; they’re seeing life through the eyes of someone a lot younger.
So during ones younger years, they’re likely to have been neglected for long periods of time or perhaps it was a one-off experience that left a mark. The emotional experience/s has then stayed trapped in their body and is defining how they experience life as an adult.
Ones emotional body can be carrying the following feelings: abandonment, grief, hopelessness, helplessness, shame, fear and death. These will need to be faced and released, and this can be done with the assistance of a therapist or a healer.
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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.