3.9 The Battle of Self-Awareness

Who are you? What are you? What do you stand for or against? This is the battle we each must fight on order to get to a higher place within ourselves.

I too am struggling with this awareness. I used to know who I was, what I was about, how to define “me”. But after a serious emotional event, you come out the other side as something, someone else. It’s this “other” that we have to deal with now.

Who are we after post-traumatic growth? What did we lose? What did we gain? What traits and characteristics can we and should we shed? What do we need going forward to maximize our latent and newfound potential?

When I started this as the “Chronicles of” I didn’t know I should have named it the “Campaign of”. I originally wanted it to be more stories and anecdotes but for me it’s evolved into a series of guideposts for my own growth and development.

In the car Saturday morning I had an epiphany. A) It’s time to re-read the 33 Strategies of War. I’m about to go to war and since it’s THE manual for such a thing, I need it. B) The first chapters are about defining and declaring war. My life should be looked at as a series of campaigns. My overall strategy should be the campaign of “Ross Jaynes”. I am my own worst enemy and should be treated as such. If I am not forwarding the overall campaign of Ross Jaynes on a day to day basis, I have failed my mission. I am the only one who can win and I am the only one who can defeat me.

It is an easy but complex problem to wrap around. I think the language we use to ourselves matters. With this new found/rediscovered idea, I can change the course for the battle of self-awareness.

3.8 Uncertainty

I doubt myself. I’m also very discouraging of me too. I think it has to do with that “perfect” problem. If it can’t be perfect than what’s the point? Saying that here is dealing with a limiting belief.

The idea of it occurred yesterday after I read one of my feedback forms from my photography class. I had gotten back 3 already, all very positive. The 4th was not so positive. It wasn’t negative but it also wasn’t a glowing compliment either. Looking at it now, dispassionately, it’s  a fair assessment of how someone could have experienced it. I took it personally at first though, it made me angry then sad at myself. Even though that feedback is crucial and necessary for me to get better, I either a) thought it was damn near perfect and/or b) thought I had planned for almost every eventuality. I was wrong on both accounts.

That was yesterday  and I was pretty sullen. This morning I have a different opinion of it though. As much as I don’t want that feedback, I need it. I do too many “perfect” things a lot. When you get into that mindset of being too good, a small failure looks like a big one. An honest critique can look like an attack, even though it’s meant to help you. Hard things make you better.

This uncertainty about that performance carries over into everything else recently. As stated in the first paragraph, I doubt myself… a lot. I also find a way to press through after that initial period of anger/sad after a bad critique. The same holds true for as I’m pressing through my current and future occupation situation. While it’s hard to not get down on myself for feeling like I’m not doing enough (perfect problem), I’m actually doing more than ever. Last week I created more than I have in the past year and a half-ish relative to same week time frame. That’s amazing and I should be happy. And while I’m content with it, there’s always MORE I can do (perfect problem). It’s great to have a drive, it’s also great to not let it run you off the cliff. I need to find balance with the uncertainty and the perfection problem.