Disclaimer : This blog post is based on an article I read about the “Truth, False and the Shadow side of ourselves, and how understanding “self” is imperative when we have to make choices that will shape our future. Everything expressed in this blog post are my opinions and what I’ve learned from the article and I’ll provide a link below if you’d like to read it. A psychologist can give accurate insight and an in depth psychological breakdown on this type of mindset. With that said, leave a like and follow the page so you can stay up to date with my future posts.
What is the right choice really?
Sometimes we’re not aware that the choices we make are responses to people’s expectations of us. You can be vigilant in making the “right” choice, but what you think is “right” for you, someone will perceive as wrong, so you can’t win for losing. Moreover, the most common and overwhelming pressure is a familial one, specifically from one’s parents. Questions arise during your adolescence into adulthood about whether you’re making appropriate choices that your parents approve of and would make them proud, or bad ones that could probably ostracize you into the black sheep of the family. Whenever you reach that state of contentment is all up to you and your motivation. With that said, I don’t believe there should be a deadline on when you reach “happiness”, as long as you get there with good intentions. Not to mention happiness is subjective and sometimes the choices we make are not always fully understood even if we believe we know the outcome.
True self vs False self and The Shadow Side
All three of these are innate; we can never and will never be able to relinquish them until we die. The “False self” begins in infancy, it’s how we interact with the external world. It’s a response to perceived threats to our well-being and it continues to evolve into adulthood. At that age, we are highly dependent on our parents and if our basic needs are not acknowledged and not mirrored by our parents, we may presume they’re irrelevant and this can cause trust issues as we grow older. Additionally under the notion of the “False self”, a person will do anything to protect themself from what they deem is unpredictable and would jeopardize their livelihood and independence. In other words, you can think of it as your “mask” or “artificial self” that you rely on to save yourself from adversity. On the other hand, we have the “True self” which we have to constantly live up to in terms of the standards we set for ourselves as well as our loved ones. With that in mind, our “True self” conflicts with our “shadow side” that consists of traits like greed, anger, envy, power, and sexual urges. The “shadow side” is like the dark side in Star Wars in terms of someone being enveloped by these negative energies (ala Darth Vader accepting the dark side) constantly. In regards to that, it can lead to damaged relationships and dismissal for what was once cared for, but it’s not irreparable and can be salvaged. Sometimes it takes drastic measures for that person to be snapped back into reality (ala Vader saving Luke from Darth Sidious aka Palpatine) and regain the “True self” or the importance someone places on things they’ve created experiences with and love. In this example I gave, even if Vader didn’t raise Luke Skywalker, he’s a byproduct of his essence and will see to it that his essence is protected at all costs. Additionally, the “True self” experiences resistance when expectations from external energy are not to their standards. However, in some cases, one will acquiesce and will no longer fulfill their desires but their parents and at that point, it’s a symbiotic relationship that won’t give you the freedom to thrive alone until the outcome is successful.
In summary, what can be done about all this? The answer to that is nuanced and I don’t have the expertise to give an adequate answer, but I think everything I’ve mentioned can lead to a delayed identity crisis if not properly managed where everything is in turmoil, but if that person is cognizant about the strife surrounding their life, it can give way to a psychological renewal and positive ideas that can lead to fulfillment.