Personal Me vs Professional Me


I was talking with my therapist last week about my worth as a person.  I still struggle with viewing myself as important, worthwhile, or meaningful.  Or in pretty much positive in any way.

This is getting better, though.  With things going so well with my work, I am feeling more positive about things.  I was telling my therapist that the company I am going to in West Virginia is very eager to have me.  I told her that the people I work with in Little Rock are always telling me what a great job I do, and how helpful I am.  My boss takes me to lunch at least once a week, sometimes more.

My therapist asked me if this helped me to see my worth, and I explained to her that I saw my professional worth, but that I still had a hard time seeing my worth as a person outside of my work.  She told me that the people I work with obviously like me.  She said they want to spend time with me, they compliment me, and they talk to me about non-work related matters.  I told her that I didn’t see it that way.  I see that they like my WORK and they like how I perform, so they compliment me to keep me happy.  I said that the people in West Virginia only wanted me because I work hard and would be productive for them.  Then I mentioned that, when they talk about non-work things with me, it isn’t to ask about ME, it’s so they can talk about THEM.  I am just a good listener.  Quiet, meek, eager to agree.  That’s how I am at work, anyway.  I act a little differently in interpersonal relationships.

It was then pointed out to me that lunch times are not required.  My boss does not have to take me to lunch.  I guess not.  I guess she’s right, maybe they do like me.  I’m having a hard time wrapping my head around that, though.  I don’t see myself as likeable.  I don’t see myself as a person others would want to spend time with unless they had to or were getting something from me.

It is always a shock to my system when I hear something positive about myself.  It makes me very uncomfortable and I want to sink into the floor.  I never know how to respond.  I always think the other person is blowing smoke up my ass so they can get something from me.  I wasn’t raised in a household that was free with the compliments, so I just don’t know how to take them.  In order to take the compliments at work, I have to completely separate my personal self from my professional self.  They do not like me personally, they like the work I do professionally.

My therapist was trying to show me the error in my thinking.  I’m pretty sure that, more than likely, I am probably wrong about how I see myself (Wow, I sure couldn’t make that a declarative statement LMCAO).  It’s how I see myself, though, and I am finding it incredibly difficult to see myself in a different light.  I just cannot see the positives in myself.  Not yet.  I’m getting there, though.  At least now I am able to see that I have SOME worth, even if I believe I have worth solely because of how I handle myself professionally.  It’s a start.  Sorry if this post sounded exceptionally whiny…I just had to get it out.

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Categories: Borderline Personality Disorder, BPD, Daily Life, DBT, Mental Illness, Thoughts, Work | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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