That’s how I can describe myself right now. I felt it a lot growing up having a very beautiful mother, I felt it by being surrounded by accomplished cousins, I felt it when I wasn’t doing as well as most kids back in grade school.
I feel it in every point in my life. I feel it when I see someone prettier than me. I feel it when I talk to someone more intelligent than me. I feel it when I’m surrounded by accomplished people and realize I am far less accomplished than they are. I feel it a lot.
Sometimes it goes away, sometimes I forget it. But when I encounter another person whom I know is better than me in one way or another, I feel it, and it stings. I despise the feeling.
I am not sure if everybody goes through this. Maybe everybody does, just in varying degrees.
When I’m going through another bout of insecurity, I am aware I am going through another cycle of it. I am all too familiar with how my mind works in trying to battle with insecurity.
1. You recognize that that person is better than you in one way or another.
2. You find the flaws in that person.
3. You enumerate the things in which you think you are better than that person. You think of the things that person could not do.
4. You recognize that what you are doing is not good. You recognize what you are doing: you’re rationalizing. You recognize that you’re trying to make excuses, you’re trying to battle your insecurity by trying to see yourself in a better light now that you’ve recognized that that person is better in a way that matters to you.
5. You try to change this way of thinking. You say to yourself that you are equals, that you are better than that person in other ways. That though that person is better in this way, you are better in another way. In other words, you go back to number 3, but in a more positive light.
6. Your interaction with that person stops and you begin to forget for a while.
That’s how it usually is.
Other times, it’s worse.
Especially when it’s linked to jealousy. Jealousy is different from envy, and it is when insecurity is accompanied by jealousy does it become envy. Which is way worse than insecurity.
You like this person. You find out that the person you like likes another person. You’re hurt but you don’t let it show. You continue to smile and nod and pretend it does not affect you.
Then you try to find out who this person is. You try to find more and learn more about this person. With the internet, it is all too easy. You find their Facebook profile, their Twitter, their LinkedIn, their Instagram and whatever social network’s full of information about them.
You go through the cycle once more. But this time there’s another baggage. Why did he/she choose her/him over me? What made him/her better in his/her eyes? Why not me? Why can’t it be me?
And it hurts. Hurts because you know you’re insecure and you know it’s an ugly thing. You’d never want to admit that you’re insecure. You’d never want them to see. Especially that person you like. Because it’s pathetic and you know it. It hurts much more because you’ll never know the answer to your questions. It hurts because there’s nothing you can do.
And it sucks. It really does.
But it’s up to you how you face it, how you address it. It’s up to you.
You can wallow in misery and self-pity and mope. Or you could move and try to convince yourself again that you’re better in other ways. That there are things only you can do. We go back to it because it works. And it’s not really a bad thing because it’s true.
You could also try to improve yourself. Learn new skills, practice the skills you do have, and do other things that make you a better person.
And of course, you can try moving on. Accept that we are capable of different things, talented in different things. Accept the fact that that person you like just might not be for you after all.
And there’s that. Like most problems, you can either suffer because of it and stay stuck wallowing in your misery, or you could use it to your own advantage. Make it work for you. Use it to get up.
You’d realize that maybe, having insecurities isn’t so bad, after all.