Through a Jungian Lens

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Projecting Perfection

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Floating free in the icy waters of the Bow River

There is no doubt that each of us is not much different than this block of ice that has broken off from the shoreline, from what once was a massive ice cover hiding a river flowing beneath. But, as I look at this image I see something of myself, a part of me that has been frozen for too long. When I say frozen, I am referring to my lack of engagement with the world in an authentic manner. Rather than being fully authentic, I have invested a lot of my energy to project an image of myself that strives for perfection. I wanted to be a person that everyone liked yet I didn’t believe that anyone could actually like me if I let my hidden parts be seen by others. My approach would fit very well into Glover’s description of “Nice Guy.”

“As much as Nice Guys try to look good and get people to like them, . . . [their] . . .  defenses keep people at arm’s length. Like most Nice Guy patterns, these unconscious behaviors actually accomplish the opposite of what the Nice Guy really craves. While desiring love and connection, his behaviors serve as an invisible force field that keeps people from being able to get close to him.

Nice Guys have a difficult time comprehending that in general, people are not drawn to perfection in others. People are drawn to shared interests, shared problems, and an individual’s life energy.

Humans connect with humans. Hiding one’s humanity and trying to project an image of perfection makes a person vague, slippery, lifeless, and uninteresting.” (Glover, No More Mr. Nice Guy, p.46)

Attending to the process of daring to be honest with my self, I am beginning to peel back the layers of disguise that I have used since childhood. I am not a child anymore and have nothing to fear in being honest with myself and in turn, honestly presenting the self I rediscover to all those who are in my life.


7 Responses

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  1. hohoho
    there is a lot of fear to in being honest with one’s self, indeed!


    March 25, 2012 at 7:33 pm

    • I am finding that this fear is life-enhancing versus the fear I feel in not being honest with myself. Fear of darkness versus fear of being exposed as a fallible and frail human. The biggest fear is at the intersection where one must make a paradigm shift to begin believing in one’s self.


      March 26, 2012 at 4:50 am

  2. Dear Dr., you wrote :”there is a lot of fear to, in being honest with one’s self, indeed!”.

    I agree with you Dr. that after the process, one still “can” feel a lot of fear in being honest with one’s self, when presenting yourself to the outer world – but when this is experienced, it is a indication that the process was not successful rounded.
    When the process on a/the specific part is successful rounded, the “fear” is no longer there -because we transformed that/a part of separateness in becoming one with one’s self – syzygy as Jung would address the matter.

    In the eyes and/or opinion of others one is Daring

    Opa Bear

    March 26, 2012 at 12:47 am

  3. Robert, I’m glad that you are getting some value out of that book, already. I enjoyed it immensely, and keep returning to it to pick up more nuggets.


    March 26, 2012 at 9:51 am

    • It’s a very good book, thank you for bringing it to my attention, Paul. 🙂


      March 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm

  4. When I was a little girl, my mother would ring a small bell when she wanted us — one ring for me, two for my brother. To say that I grew up with a Pavlovian sense of relationship is an understatement. 🙂 To deprogram, and begin living from my Self and not for others, has been bittersweet and has entailed many twists and turns. But I do know this: to live as consistently as I can from my center means that I have had to let some people and some ways of living go — separations that I never thought in my wildest dreams I would have to make. That is the frightening part of the journey for me, because some people are not “drawn to shared interests, shared problems.” Their divisive hearts can only focus on differences.

    Sarah Densmore

    March 28, 2012 at 1:26 pm

    • Sarah, thank you so much for sharing your story here – yes, things and people are set free, some set themselves free – in the process. But, perhaps that is necessary to find one in authentic relationships with those who are left.


      April 2, 2012 at 6:25 pm

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