Seeking validation?

When I was a young boy I fell in love with music. Now I suppose that is something that teenagers do. They start listening to some music. What kind of music, depends on what kind of music they are surrounded with growing up, I suppose.

I was six years old when a distant relative who was a teenager then, copied to me on a c-casette some KISS albums. I would listen to those. A six year old boy who didn’t speak a word of english by that time, would sing along to the tunes and love them.

My big brother, who is three years older than me, was a big Queen fan. So I would get to hear the perfection of Freddie’s singing from early on. I still believe that I know the lyrics to most Queen songs by heart, even though I would say that I haven’t really listened to any Queen albums in all my adult life.

Once I got to my teenage years, I started being influenced by my peers around me. A friend of mine was into heavier music. So I kinda followed him into bands like Metallica, Megadeth etc.

A teenage mind is seeking validation. If you are into metal music, you’ll seek validation from the likeminded of your peers. You form your own little peer support groups. First in school. Then your social circle gets bigger the more years go by.

I got my first guitar back when I was six years old. I even took a few lessons, but I didn’t really like it. It was so hard. So I quit.

Now when I got to about 14 years old. I had found idols that we’re guitar heros. I looked up to my peers who were into music. I Idolized my peers who were good at playing guitar.

I seeked validation from the people I looked up to.

By the time I was 18, I was sure that Jim Morrison was a god. I watched that Oliver Stone movie probably 50 times at least. I read his autobiographies and started getting to know the music of his time period, Stones etc. My Idols in life had become people who’s lifestyle was chaotic and destructive.

By the time that I hit 20. I had joined a band. It was formed by one of those peers that I had always looked up to, because of his talent in music. And now I got to be a part of that.
And oh boy was I seeking validation.
I became a cheap version of all the rock cliches available. I hung at bars all the time. Talking to people who were in bands and hanging out with girls who seeked validation from the guys who were in those bands.

I built my self worth on that validation. I started believing that I am worthy if I behave in a way that validates me being something I imagined others would look up to.

Ugly part of this is that now I am also judging people who I think don’t deserve my validation. So if you are not in a band, you’re not worthy of my interest. I am somehow above you.

Same exact pattern of behavior repeated in my life later on. I worked in restaurant business. I started as a cook. changed pretty fast to front of the house. behind the bar etc.

I started looking up to guys and gals in that industry, who I thought were on the pedestal. I started looking for their validation and I started acting in the same way as before.
I quickly got promotion after promotion. And by the time I was 26 I was a restaurant manager/part owner of a restaurant. I had 50 workers “under” me. That was exactly how I saw the situation.
I was validating my existence again on my own terms. I was again judging people.
If someone was a server, they were below me. That is how this kind of thought process works.

In order for me to feel validated, I needed to put other people down.

It took me a long way to the bottom, before I was ready to let go of this ego driven mentality of seeking validation on other people’s expense.

Through self reflection, I understand that this is all coming from my feeling of inadequacy. The fear of not being enough. And I’ve worked on it for years now. With the program I’ve become aware that by becoming visible with myself as I am, the burden of wanting to be something I think the world wants me to be, has slowly faded away.
I can be visible as a small boy, who wants to be nice. As a man who wants to serve the community…etc. I can be visible as a person who is still sometimes guided by irrational fears. Still has prejudice, Still isn’t tolerant of some people, places or things. Still is jealous, Still sometimes am angry…etc.

I know now that the path to becoming happy, doesn’t lead through trying to become what I think others would want me to be. That is not real.
As it is not real, it is unrealistic. I can’t set myself an expectation of how I should be, that is unrealistic. Because that will lead to a disappointment 100% quaranteed.

The path to being happy is accepting myself as I am. Becoming visible as I am. When that happens, nothing can go wrong.

I wanted to share this a little cause of a conversation I had today with one of you lovely people. Thanks for that to the person in question :wink:

Oh…and it makes absolutely no difference in life what the job title is, how much money you have, what kind of a car you drive…if those matter to you, you are just seeking validation to something that isn’t real.

UGH…have a nice thursday eve.

Over and out.

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I have also had similar conversations on this subject recently!

Through the drinking, drug use, smoking, my job, voluntary commitments… All the personas I have created and used to present a version of myself to the world. To cover up the things I am scared of - not fitting in, not being good enough etc etc. To conform to some imaginary standard that no one else asked me to achieve but one I have invested a lot of time and energy into without even realising. And then got upset when no one noticed or appreciated my efforts (obvs!).

Now I have let go of these things I find myself wondering what I am left with. The best answer I can come up with, for now, is simply a human being who wants to love and be loved (in the broadest sense of the word). I don’t have it all figured out and I’ve got no idea what’s coming next.

Only one way to find out!

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I find that by fearless moral inventory it is possible to finally hear the voice that will know what is right for you.
The voice that you have always known was telling you what you should or shouldn’t do.
That voice is the guide, it’ll tell you how you should go forward. I call that voice my higher power, spirituality.

Agree with you.

This is so true.

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Thank You Sir. Amazingly stated…

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I am also working on coming back to the present and not worrying too much about how the future will pan out. All that stuff about expectations and resentments! And trusting that things will become clearer when they need to.

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