What someone may find, if they were to step back and reflect on their life, is that they have the inclination to hide themselves. As a result of this, how they generally come across won’t reflect who they truly are.

This will mean that a number of their needs and feelings will rarely influence their behaviour with them largely being driven by the needs and feelings of others. Still, although they will be this way, this is not to say that the average person will realise this.

Two Experiences

Now, there is the chance that they could be someone who usually behaves like a follower. They are then typically going to go along to get along and they are not going to leave much of a mark on the world.

Then again, they could be someone who usually behaves like a leader. Consequently, they are typically going to assert themselves and they will leave a mark on the world.


When it comes to the latter, they will create the impression that they freely express themselves. In reality, they will have trouble freely expressing themselves but they will be very good at hiding this fact.

Behind how they behave will be a strong need for approval and this approval will be provided by them behaving in a certain way. One way of looking at it would be to say that they might be seen as having it all together but they will still be jumping through the hoops that society lays out.

The Same Experience

So, if someone is in this position, they could be seen as successful, for instance. But, while this will be the case, they are not going to feel deeply fulfilled by the life that they lead.

The needs and feelings that are largely overlooked will be crying out for their attention but, as they have such a strong need to please others, these parts of their being will continue to be overlooked. If they no longer had such a strong need to please others, they could end up behaving in a very different way and their life could radically change.

No Different

If someone is not in this position and they are a follower, they will gain a fair amount of approval by acting as an extension of others. They will be seen as easy-going and they are not going to expect much from others.

From the outside, they can be seen as living a very average existence and be seen as being unsuccessful. Behind this, as with the scenario above, will be a very different person; someone who would behave very different and live a very different life if their need to please others subsided.

At the Root

Deep down, regardless of what position someone is in, they are likely to believe that there is something inherently wrong with them. By seeing themselves as unlovable and unworthy, they will have to put on an act and hide themselves in order to survive.

This will show that they don’t accept themselves either, as if they did, they wouldn’t be concerned about pleasing others and there would be people in their life who accept them for who they are. If they have felt the need to hide their true self for as long as they can remember, there is the chance that what took place during their developmental years has played a big part in why they are this way.

Way Back

During this stage of their life, they might have been brought up by at least one parent who was unable to provide them with the love that they needed to grow and develop in the right way and accept them. This may have meant that many different parts of them were criticised.

Parts of their appearance and personality and some of their interests may have been rejected. For example, they may have been seen as being too slim or as carrying too much weight, too loud or shy, too insensitive or sensitive and as being into things that were not acceptable.

The Outcome

At this stage of their life, they needed to be loved and accepted, not for them to be derived and pulled apart. The trouble is that as they were egocentric, they would have personalised what took place, and not realised that how they were treated was a reflection of how wounded their parent/parents were.

What this illustrates is that they were not born emotionally whole and complete; this is something that would have taken place if they had received the right nutrients. They would then know, at the core of their being, that who they are is acceptable and they would be connected to, and feel comfortable with, expressing their true self.


If someone can relate to this and they are ready to change their life, they may need to reach out for external support. This is something that can be provided with the assistance of a therapist or healer.

Author's Bio: 

Author of 25 books, transformational writer, teacher and consultant, Oliver JR Cooper, hails from England. His insightful commentary and analysis covers all aspects of human transformation, including love, partnership, self-love, self-worth, inner child and inner awareness. With over two thousand, eight hundred in-depth articles highlighting human psychology and behaviour, Oliver offers hope along with his sound advice.

To find out more go to - http://www.oliverjrcooper.co.uk/

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