15 Jul Are you an attention addict?
When you meet someone new, do you constantly check your phone to see if he texted you? Do you feel a surge of relief when you get that sweet note, “hey babe” and forget about the last two hours obsessing over how he was going to break up with you? If this sounds familiar, you may be addicted to attention.
Here’s the thing. Everyone is addicted to attention to some extent. We are social creatures and we have all been conditioned to measure our worth from the feedback of others. This addiction started with our parents. You were praised when you were good and they withdrew attention when you were bad.
In school, you are constantly receiving validation based on what social group you affiliated yourself. If you were in the cool crowd, you felt like you were worth more and the geeks were somehow less valuable. They interviewed people about their high school years. Every person, whether they were the football star, class president, or class nerd, all said they never felt like they fit in. We are all seeking that approval and attention.
Imagine this need for approval entering your dating life. You think you are in love, but you are really just looking for them to give you that reassurance that you are okay. How many times have you wanted someone to want you back just for the attention and that feeling of being wanted?
The attention addict is constantly looking externally for validation from others, which is a very insecure place to be. You cannot control other peoples’ projections and subjective opinions. You ride a roller-coaster of emotions as you perceive them giving and taking away attention along with your sense of self-worth.
Now some of you may be thinking, “I hate attention, this is not me at all. I like to hide.” Well, sorry but this is just the other side of the same coin. By avoiding attention, you are still terrified of what others will think of you. Just like the attention addict, you give them power to gauge your worth but you are too scared to come out and face the rejection.
The way to free yourself from the addiction of approval of others is to value only one person’s opinion – your own. If you believe in you, then what others say won’t matter. You can find a solid ground of love within.
A Vedanta teacher once said, “You cannot believe in God (divine/universe) unless you believe in yourself.” This is a very powerful statement. I see many so-called “spiritual” people claiming they have great connection to the higher realms but are constantly seeking attention and approval from other human beings who are fickle and, for the most part, hate themselves.
A great mantra to say to yourself is, “The only approval is need is my own.” Give yourself attention. Be compassionate to yourself when you say the wrong things, get people mad or feel like you pushed someone away with your neediness. Don’t kick yourself to the curb anymore, you need to give yourself the attention you crave.
If you only knew your true self, you would never be scared or feel insecure. You are divine. If you are going to be addicted to something, start with a little self-love crack. It’s free, it’s legal and it takes you to another way of being.