Are You on the Right Path? How to Know for Sure

Why are some people confident that they are on the right path, and others doubt themselves every step of the way?

Psychologists say some of it comes from childhood. Children model adults they observe, and some of the behavior is copied unconsciously. In some cases, parents teach their children to feel helpless. Learned helplessness happens when a child gets no response to his or her actions, or gets either all-negative or all-positive feedback. In case of negative feedback, the child lives in constant fear of punishment. In case of positive feedback, the child grows up to be a version of what’s commonly known a “mama’s boy.”

If the feedback the child receives from family, friends and teachers is predominantly negative, he or she begins to believe that the negativity is warranted. With time, it becomes internalized. As a result, the person has no faith in his or her own actions. One’s confidence in the effectiveness of one’s actions is formed in childhood. If you carry any of this baggage with you, it will come out in the following ways:

1. TAKING A LONG TIME TO MAKE A DECISION

The fear of making a mistake is at the root of one’s unwillingness to commit to a decision.

2. COMPLAINING

The blaming of others for everything that happens to us helps shirk responsibility for one’s own life. The hidden agenda here is to strengthen one’s own position by making others look bad.

3. LACKING CLOSE FRIENDSHIPS

Self-criticism drives one to either behave aggressively towards others, or avoid people altogether.

4. ATTENTION SEEKING

Lack of self-appreciation drives one to seek it from others. There’s a need to hear a constant stream of compliments and positive evaluations.

5. SELF-PITY

Allowing others bestow appreciation and attention also opens up the door for criticism. If the good opinions of others matter so much, then any negative opinions cause one to engage in bouts of self-pity.

6. NEEDING TO WIN

The need to win at any cost has, at its core, the need for the approval of others.

In the next blog, we will discuss how to know for sure that you are on the right path.

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