DENIAL : THE 800 POUND GORILLA IN THE ROOM OF PERSONAL GROWTH
Denial, consciously unconscious, cognitive dissonance, blinding oneself ….most of us know these terms, and at varying degrees have worked through some of our denial. Some are still struggling in the dark.
Denial in self development parlance by definition means that you are consciously unaware, or unconsciously unaware, or a combination of both in not seeing (perceiving) particular, usually conditioned, behavior.
Denial is a protective mechanism, a skill if you will, that is usually developed at a young age to protect the child from ‘seeing’ usually unhealthy to outright abusive behavior. It gives us a sense of security, i.e. ‘out of sight, out of mind’..but it’s the mind that is actually blinding one’s sight, even still, ‘insight’.
A Clinical Definition: “Denial in psychology, an ego defense mechanism that operates unconsciously to resolve emotional conflict, and to allay anxiety by refusing to perceive the more unpleasant aspects of external reality”
Let me expand on that and simplify as we like to do here at educo.biz; Denial is a refusal to see, accept and begin the processing of painful realities, by either knowingly or unknowingly deluding oneself with an ‘Alternate Reality’. It is extremely debilitating and inhibiting to one’s sense of personal freedom and autonomy.
There are many levels of denial. The hardest and most difficult is what I will call : the first denial or the big lie, and that is “oh, i’m just dandy” when that person is dying inside, or riddled with guilt and knee knocking, or wearing the albatross of shame or is just plain insecure about his life and his personhood in general. One may be partially conscious or absolutely unconscious about WHY they feel the way they do yet they have made a ‘home’ for it. They justify it somehow. They embrace the abnormal as normal and will reject any challenges. Have you heard this one “oh, that’s just how I am”? Denial is at its most heinous, when the subject is so detached from their actual self that they actually protect the unhealthy behavior, messaging or perspectives and usually call them ‘their own’. Yes, identifying themselves (‘seeing yourself as’} with or sympathizing or rebelling from – all reactions from the imprint of unhealthy events or persons. This is when a person becomes attached in a wrong way to it’s oppressor or traumatic event. Stockholm Syndrome is an example of this behavioral phenomena and we would put forth the supplication that the more denial (low self behavioral awareness) one is in and embraces, the greater set up for the next traumatic event, and again to be ‘handled’ poorly leading to to further embedding trauma resulting in a spiral of utter madness……unless….yes…remember, the inclination of the spirit?
pain is the great awakener…oh yes..
isn’t it time to stop running – planning – scheming and distracting on the rat wheel of thinking?
slow down…won’t you just let ‘it’ catch up….let it out, you know it’s right there.
I cannot tell you how to break denial. I know I can poke, provoke and paste your irrationality on a mirror of self observation and put it in your face and you still can deny what is right in front of you. It’s the nature of it. It’s programmed objective is to both blind you and resist tampering. I can debate you into an corner and if you ‘do not want to see’, you will not see. No amount of data or evidence can override this. Surely you have experienced this phenomena where as everyone around the ‘subject’ can see what the problem or issue is yet no amount of persuasion can convince otherwise. Here where pride and ego cling like grime death to false paradigms and illusions of control to do anything but walk through the fear then to the pain or corruption that lies with in each of us.
Only if there is an inclination of the spirit to ‘become’ to ‘unfold’ and return to something more true in himself. I cannot put that in there for anyone. We cannot give insight. So many need to see yet only a few truly actuate in accordance with that desire.
We can only grow and become more when we are willing. One can only start the ‘work’ of growth, change and development if he is ‘willing’. We can only work with the willing – correct? Is this not true in all aspects of life? Is this not true within ourselves?
“if the worker is unwilling, the fruit remains unpicked, and thus, unrealized”
So we invite you, I invite you to ask yourself some powerful questions:
what am I blinding myself from?
what creeps up on me when I slow down?
where am I unreasonable or irrational in my life?
what haven’t I been willing to sit with?
what do I don’t deny yet step over and accommodate in my life?
Let questions simmer, ponder yet don’t over think. Overthinking is the way the ego tries to become more powerful. More on ‘Overthinking’ in future post. One is an endeavor of unfoldment (enlightenment) the latter (overthinking) is rat wheel of the mind.
Remember the “MAGIC KEY’ to all understanding insight and contentment: Be Patient with yourself, as student of life you are not required to know everything and be everything right now!
…just be willing to ‘show up’ and ‘participate’..and that is more than you will ever know!