It was unexpected. I had a flurry of messages and emails from friends after I posted “I am mediocre.” The thread of their responses was that they liked my viewpoint, and found it an interesting way of confronting my superiority complex.
I wondered why.
And I wondered about how this acceptance of being mediocre is affecting me. My reflections point me to my fears.
A few weeks ago, someone said to me, “You are afraid of intimacy.” I almost fell off my chair and defense mechanisms starting ringing fire sirens. I broached the topic with him, and acknowledged that I was afraid of intimacy, possibly because I was afraid to become too close and dependent on another person, with the risk of them abandoning me, and leaving me hanging.
Where does this fear come from? Did I have traumatic experiences in my childhood that could have left scars in my subconscious?
Before I dig deeper, let me relate this fear of dependence to my reluctant acceptance of being mediocre:
I do not want to become dependent on others → so I must do it on my own → I have to be worthy in my own right → therefore, I have to do it better than others → I must be perfect → I do not need help to be perfect or be worthy in my own right → I must do it on my own → I am about to breakdown but I am Okay on my own….
In this loop of self-talk, I convinced myself that I can do everything well on my own, catalysing the illusion of feeling like I am better than others. I discern what others do not see (I really do… especially in my bubble of imagination). I find self-serving evidence that I am smarter, quicker, faster, more comprehensive… I decided that I was superior.
And all this based on the fear of getting too close to anyone, or worse, dependent on them for my being.
When I had the flash of enlightenment, that perhaps I was mediocre, I felt a sense of liberation. I did not know it then, but it was the beginning of freedom from my own expectations on myself.
It was an understanding that I did not have to be perfect to be worthy in my own right.
It was an understanding that I am not mediocre; and I did not to prove it to anyone.
It was a new found self-confidence planting its seeds in my heart.
Am I still fearful? Possibly. And now that I have this awareness, I can work with it, reflect on it, and find a change with which I would be comfortable.