19 Sep Your Body Is Not A Disneyland Part 7: Perception, Disparity and Our Search for Acceptance
I often talk about our real, feel and ideal with people. These three terms have to do with how people see us and our actions (our real), how we feel about ourselves deep down inside (our feel), and how we want to be seen by ourselves and others (our ideal). Often people have wide gaps between a few of these concepts, if not all three. The more separation between our real, feel, and ideal, usually the more distress a person feels in their life.
When it comes to how we treat our bodies, there are often wide gaps between our real, feel and ideal, because it can feel painful to be so honest with ourselves and others. We spend so much time trying to avoid our truth and our emotions. As a result, we look to others for approval with our appearance and sexuality to see what we need to do to feel accepted and fit in with others. Family, peers, society and sources in the media become the objects that we look to that contribute to how we determine our real, feel, and ideal. There are many areas in our life where we may apply these concepts of real, feel and ideal and our sexuality is definitely one of them that is prominent in our culture. Too many times we are trying to deny and disprove our feel, ignore our real, and spend too much time trying to support our ideal by attempting to appeal to others through the way we dress, sexual innuendo and sexual behaviors… These behaviors are often accompanied with arrogance and exploitation which become a major part of our avoidance.
The purpose of arrogance is to protect us with a shield of false pride. It often hides feelings like shame, guilt, embarrassment, inadequacy, unlovable, and many other emotions that we consider to be bad, wrong and weak. The problem is that it often our arrogance can lead us to denial and can result in us getting into situations that are over our head and sometimes dangerous and even life-threatening. When we attempt to dress, talk, and/or act in a sexually provocative manner, we are often trying to use some of our “assets” that we feel will appeal to others. We want the attention, acceptance and power from others, often because we want to feel better about ourselves, getting us further away from our “feel” and closer to our ideal, but at what expense to our integrity and truth?
Am I saying that wanting to dress up and look nice is or wanting to feel our “sexual beingness” is a bad thing? Absolutely not. What I do believe, however, is that behaving as we do contributes to our avoidance of emotions, issues, attitudes and beliefs that would help us to become better people if we had the courage to face them. Too much of our lives are spent around avoidance of learning and understanding ourselves, and the intoxication surrounding sex and everything around it is often a great way to avoid.
Until my next post, pay attention to your feel, real, and ideal and see what you can learn about yourself. You may be surprised.