Is it hard for you to open up to people? I have also gone through these experiences where it was hard for me to talk about my feelings because I was afraid of what others might think. I decided to give this difficulty two names: The myth and the projection of the “strong” person.
My myth of the strong person is the self-imposed idea of being “strong.” This meant to hide my emotions, pretend that I don’t have certain insecurities, don’t tell people when I’m going through a hard time because I feel like I’m playing the “victim,” among other things. In other words, creating an image of a “strong Alejandra.” And sadly, that version of me doesn’t exist. Because being a human being means that things do impact you, whether they are big or small. It also means that even when we understand our value, we will continue to have insecurities in a world that sells us the idea that we are not enough. We have the right to feel that something hurts or makes us angry because our emotions are part of our humanity.
A strong person does not see themselves through a specific lens all the time. A “strong” person, or as I prefer to call it “a resilient person”, is someone who recognizes that their worth or strength does not reside in the moments in which they fall. Their strength is in their existence on this planet. If you find yourself reading this message, surely you have fallen many times, and you continue to be here. With scratches, bruises, and a couple of painful memories. But that’s what makes you a resilient person.
The projection of the strong person
The projection of the strong person, for me, are those actions and comments that we make, often unconsciously, to hide our vulnerability or minimize our experience. Expressions such as:
“But it’s nothing…”
“It’s okay” (when clearly it’s not okay)
“It is what it is, it’s in the past”
And all of their derivatives. I have used those phrases SO many times! And they are my way of putting a lock on that door to my emotions and trying not to make the other person feel “uncomfortable” or see me as a “victim”. That is the image that we create without realizing it, but that hurts our vulnerability and that of other people. When we make these comments, we unconsciously send the message of “My emotions feel uncomfortable and yours too”, even when it is not our intention. Sitting with the heaviness and discomfort of these emotions is difficult.
Here are some phrases to use when creating an emotionally safe space for your emotions and those of other people:
Thanks for joining me in this post <3 I hope this gives you another look at what it means to be a “strong” person. And if you have any comments or stories you would like to share with me, you can contact me.