Interaction with people is an inevitable part of life. It’s natural as we are social animals. Interaction becomes a complex interplay of emotions and ego, establishing hierarchal patterns that social structure mandates. Unpleasant interactions result from the view that the perceived identity that we have about others does not connect with the perceived identity the others have of us. Interaction is of perceptions, arguments, misunderstandings and humiliation that are unavoidable outcome of this. Our identity/ego is entirely perceptive and imaginary. Ego is variable, modifiable and mutable construct, it is not fixed. A variable parameter cannot be absolute. While we conclude that the other person cannot understand us, do we understand ourselves?
The self that we commonly assume ourselves to be add a base of memories with conviction of a unique discrete identity, a composite of impressions we have of ourselves and the impression we feel others have about us. The former is a complex of identity and ego while the latter represents the superego. Interaction with other nurtures the superego and lends meaning to the script of life. Using relationship as an emotional mirror to assess and evaluate one’s own identity, only generates a chaotic pluralities of identity. Stress and anxiety arise out of our efforts to build and maintain the image we want others to have of us.
Reaction based self esteem is susceptible to wild vacillation. It triggers approval seeking behaviour that is directed towards appreciation and recognition. This sort of behaviour is a form of self abuse for it puts others evaluation ahead of what we truly want for ourselves. One need not be contemptuous or completely disregard others opinion but they should not become the driving force of our life.
Stoic self assessment that is stable lends a great degree of security and self assurance in any interaction or relationship. A steady interaction between two stable individuals supports the beautiful edifice of a meaningful relationship. Leaning on one another only up to a point can never support the superstructure of a sustainable relationship. . Misunderstanding becomes common place and can be expensive. Relationships pursued solely with expectation or ego gratification are doomed from the start. Every relationship has rights and responsibilities and asserting only the former works to the detriment of any interaction. Relationships are meant to aid and search for our true self. They must help us evolve rather than serve self assertion.