20 Dec I Hate Myself But I Still Think I’m Better Than Everyone Else…
Have you ever had that moment where you know you’re super self-conscious, self-critical, and all around not quite good enough… yet you still feel that little bit superior to everyone else?
Confusing, isn’t it?
So, how do you get past the issue of hating yourself but still thinking you’re better than everyone else?
This is what we call in NLP an internal conflict.
One part of you believes something… and another part of you believes something entirely different.
It’s easy to resolve with NLP techniques, but in the meantime it causes a lot of problems in how you feel and act!
A big part of the conflict here lies in what’s called the ‘introspection illusion’. This is a bias in your thinking that wrongly means you assume you really understand your thinking and what’s behind it. You get very introspective and think you’ve got yourself sussed – but you’re wrong.
What does that mean?
It means that we come up with all kinds of reasons for our behaviour but they’re not often true. What we look for is a cause, a way to explain what we’ve done, whether it’s good or bad. Once we think of a reason, we convince ourselves that it’s true – even if it’s not. So, essentially, we’re baffled by our own BS, and we totally buy into it.
The reason we buy into it is because finding a ‘cause’ makes us feel better. We don’t want to feel silly because we don’t really understand why we’ve done something, or why we feel a certain way, so if we can come up with an explanation, we grab it with both hands and hold it to our chest like it’s adorable and fluffy.
To make matters worse…
In contrast to this, but very much related, this bias also means that we think other people are wrong about their self-introspection. So, we over-estimate how accurate we are about our feelings and behaviour, yet we’re equally convinced that other people are wrong about their own behaviour. That means we judge them pretty harshly because they clearly don’t know a damn thing – not like we do, of course.
This cognitive bias exists whether you’re filled with self-confidence or not. We judge ourselves by our intentions (which, of course, we always think are good!) and others by their actions and our belief that they lack awareness and introspection.
So how do you fix it?
Well, some psychologists think that simply being aware of it is a good step towards corrective behaviour.
That’s hit or miss. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.
The problem with that is your introspection can then become a bit of a self-fulfilling spiral.
“I know I have cognitive biases but I’m aware of them, so therefore I’m still great” is going to be an easy trap to fall into, and end up with an even worse introspection illusion!
So, here are my tips:
1) If you’re looking at your own behaviour or actions, instead of internalising and asking what your own intentions and thought processes might be, simply ask yourself what impact your actions might have had on someone else.
“I know I did that wrong but it was only because of X reason… I’m still a good person, not like the others who do it.”
YOU MIGHT THINK:
“Oops. That wasn’t the right thing to do. I don’t like it when people do that to me so I’ll apologise/say thanks/explain/hope it doesn’t impact them too much.”
2) If you find yourself starting to judge someone else for their lack of awareness/introspection and assuming their behaviour means all kinds of horrible things, ask yourself what their positive intentions might have been.
“She interrupted me in that meeting. She is so rude, I can’t believe she’d do that.”
YOU MIGHT THINK:
“It was a bit frustrating that she interrupted me in that meeting. I wonder if she felt like she wasn’t being heard, or maybe she’s worried about being too quiet and she wants to start getting ahead for a promotion. I guess that’s fair; we all want to improve and earn more money.”
Easier said than done? Sure!
Lots of mindset work is challenging to do when you’re trying to change thoughts or behaviour consciously.
That’s why in NLP, instead of trying to deal with the symptom (the thought or behaviour) we deal with the root cause (where the thought or behaviour comes from) so it stops happening.
It’s a much easier, faster, and more comfortable way of solving a problem.
And we even have a bit of fun doing it!
The question here is… do you think other people are good, or are you resentful and suspicious? Is that something you’d like to change?
The other question here is… do you think YOU’RE a good person? Would you like to think a little more of yourself?
Want to learn more about how to change your thinking or resolve your conflicts?
Check out the mindset training I run here.