Cognitive Dissonance – The Battle Of The Two Selves

It’s early in the morning when everything and everyone is quiet.  You can hear a knocking, a little rat-tat-tat at the door of your heart.  Yawning,  you roll over and peep through a little crack to see who it is. It’s your LSS (Little Secret Self), she’s speaking very quietly, she wants to talk to you.  She’s always been softly spoken, but these days her whisper is so quiet you can barely hear it.  Her voice sounds almost shaky, nervous. Her eyes are always wide too, they dart around a lot, as if expecting someone to suddenly pounce unexpectedly out of nowhere and silence her. You give her your full attention while your mind is clear for a moment, you still love her, and you miss her too. You even feel bad about everything and the way she has been pushed to the side. Somewhere in the depths of your sub-consciousness you are aware that you’re neglecting her, you secretly hate it, but it’s for the better good of everyone, it’s what you have to do right now in order to survive.  For some unknown reason you are not willing or ready to give to her her rightful place.  You are not ready to look in the mirror and see her precious face staring back at you, you don’t know why. It’s possibly because you are a little mixed up about it all…. Her (LSS), Him (Mr Incredible)  and your Shadow Self, the one who lives your life for you these days.

Your Shadow Self  seems to be doing such a good job of running your life.  Seeming strong and definite, presenting so well to the outside world.  It’s your SS that can keep up appearances and fend off any doubts by playing the necessary games and working really hard… (you know, those games that Mr Incredible wants to play with you, and all the work he gives you to do).   You can’t see your LSS doing as good a job as your SS. Maybe this is the influence of Mr Incredible, or maybe it’s another hidden fear of some kind. Maybe you never really got to know your LSS the way you thought you did.  Perhaps, when you were growing up, you didn’t have any true or healthy mirrors around you, ones that weren’t full of cracks themselves, to show you how great your LSS really is.  You just can’t imagine, that she would be any good in the lead. It’s a frightful thought for some reason, maybe because she appears so soft and gentle, you can’t imagine her showing firm resolve, courage and strength in the face of danger.  Your SS seems the better candidate for this kind of living.

You listen as your feeble LSS is talking to you…. “I know he says he loves you so much, I can see he really admires you, needs you and wants to spend all of his spare time with you. He can be reliable, he’s successful and everybody else seems to think he’s great too, (mainly because you tell them he is).”  Her voice builds slightly as she gains confidence.
“But you’re tired all the time, you have knots in your stomach,  you feel insecure and you don’t really know what goes on when you are not around because he has lied so many times about so many things.  He subtly puts you down and then builds you up again. He changes moods so quickly and when you are feeling especially happy, he shuts you down. He makes you cry at least three times a week and he never says sorry, because it’s your fault that  he hurts you.   And you know this is the very least of it, he’s called you awful names for no reason, he points out other people’s attributes and compares them with your own short-comings, he’s snuck up behind you and kicked you in the back of your legs behind your knees, so your legs would go out from under you and shoved things in your face, he’s had secrets with other girls, loaning them money and taking days off to help them without your knowing,  and yet you keep all these things a secret from your friends,  protecting him, why?”

“Uggh!”  You put your hand up to stop your LSS from going any further, you know there’s a lot more and it gets worst but it’s making you tired just hearing it.   Your LSS goes quiet and there’s silence in the room again.  Your SS takes the opportunity to enter this debate, but you put a stop to that also, God knows you’ve told yourself the pro’s and positives a thousand times, you don’t need to go over them again this morning, instead you let the truth settle down upon your heart for a little while. You reminisce on the days when you and your LSS walked closer together, why is she so frightful all the time, you wonder? As you ponder all these things you come to the dark realisation of what it means to stay where you are. When you’re alone with your LSS thinking about these things, the stark reality of continuing on this way is horrifying, but when you get up and busy yourself with your day, your SS settles upon you again and feels comfortable and familiar. It’s always when you doubt the most that a huge bunch of flowers arrive at your work and everyone around you positively reinforces what a Wonderful You  that you are and what a great  Mr Incredible  you must have.  The battle inside your head is raging. It’s so loud that it becomes all you think about most of the time, stealing your life away.  Indeed there are pro’s to staying, you’ve weighed them up many times. You will have financial security and… “Anything you want, I want you to have whatever you want Bub, anything you want is yours” (quote Mr Incredible).  There will be fun times, trips away, nice homes, you will be able to study, do your art, have a man beside you to love and to love you, (he does love you, in the only way he knows how) and the familiarity of life as you know it.  But after all this is said and done, you won’t have You.

Remember her? The one who was there when you were born and the one they will lay in your coffin one day when you die?

You’ve got a big decision to make. There’s a massive fork in the road, and the paths to choose from couldn’t be going in two more opposite directions. If you want You back again, then you may have to take the road that’s less appealing, the one that’s rocky, rough, narrow, dark and scary – you probably won’t find too many traveling companions on it either.  You may have to take a risk, and believe in You. It will be nothing less than a huge leap of faith, because you don’t realise it yet, but you never really knew your LSS as much as you thought you did. You may be pleasantly surprised. Maybe she can give you a life you never dreamed of, once your SS is out of the way.  Maybe your SS has been lying to you, tricking you, making you believe that he’s the only one who can give you a fulfilled life, a life everyone around you approves of and envy’s.  Which way will you choose Oh Wonderful You?…..Beide Richtungen


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