Saturday, March 03, 2007

What do you do when the worst critic in the world, the worst bully you've ever had won't leave you alone - and is inside you?

Taunting, second guessing, putting down, reprimanding, punishing - all the things that the mean little brats in junior high would do to you, the heart of a faceless authority figure. A never ending stream of chatter. "Why couldn't you have just/well, that was stupid/you should know better/now you're in trouble/it's your fault...." etc etc etc.

I know this voice all too well - and am able to pick it out now as it picks at me. That doesn't fix things, just being able to pick it out, but at least I know who I'm listening to.

The point is to make it stop. It can't say ANYTHING nice. And it never follows the rule if you can't say anything nice than don't say anything at all. It's like a movie critic who doesn't even like the movie in the first place, let alone being a movie critic and just pans the film without really watching it or caring.

In psychology, this thing is called the shadow. I'm very familiar with its unwanted antics, and I know what faces it has. I know what it sounds like. I know what it does to me. And I'm ready to lop its head off.

Lopping its head off is not really the point though, as much as I want to kick its dark little whiny ass. The shadow is all that balled up stuff that nobody wants and nobody loves. It's all the things you get yelled at for by adults when you're little, all the things the kids in school taunt you about, all the mistakes you've made, and all the things you should never want to be so you deny it. every last bit. You pretend its not there. It's the monster in the corner.

It doesn't like you for what you've done. And it has every right to. It's relentless. Years of negativity that get internalized come right back at you when you least expect it. It's like when the mob buries bodies in a shallow grave and the rain washes away the dirt and exposes nasty bloated corpses.

It's angry for being denied. It's angry for being buried. The reason that bullies become bullies in the first place is that they were not loved or accepted when they should have been - they have been improperly taught and treated even worse. No one abuses someone else without having been abused themselves in some way. It gets to be a vicious cycle.

So as much as I wish I could take an axe to my shadow and shout obscenities at it to make it pay for what it's done, that method is not going to improve matters.

The shadow is one's nemesis - anyone who's seen the matrix movies can understand this concept. Neo created his own nemesis - Agent Smith, and not Smith is hell bent on destroying him and infecting everything. He doesn't like where he's at any better than Neo does, but he's all violence and hate. There's this scene where there are about 5 million agent smiths coming at Neo who is fending off all of them and sending them flying in all directions.

That's where i'm at.

The thing is, at the end of this movie, there's this big battle between the two of them. Neo looks like he's giving up - but it's not the case. Smith is just about to pound the life out of him -Neo simply accepts him; what he is and what he wants. As a result, the two are reconciled and the entire movie series comes to an end.

It's not fun. Certainly not. Necessary, sure. But how to go about it - that's what I'm pondering. I have plenty of ideas.

I'm at the point of fed up with taking the crap from myself. It's a difficult knot to untie, but i'm starting to see a loose string I can pull. This is one of those times where I'm glad I'm an artist, because this would be a lot harder to do otherwise.


Blogger sterno said...

Oh is THAT the name of that guy who keeps telling me I should bother to start projects because I'll never finish them. Or the one who tells me I'm incompetent at my job and it's all just a matter of time before everybody else figures that out? Yeah, good friend of mine. I think I'll put a hit out on him :)

12:34 PM  

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