If you constantly think of yourself as an underachiever, who is rarely satisfied by the result of his actions and wish to know the root cause behind it, this post is meant for you. Passivity, a state of inaction, inertness or lethargy, there are many words to explain this less-talked-about phenomenon which bugs a number of individuals. How can you overcome the same? Is it even possible to keep yourself motivated and in a constant state of action all the time? Let’s examine.
If you ever feel as being controlled and chained by some unseen force and efforts to change is more of a mental exercise than a real physical experience, you are probably passing through a phase of inactivity or passiveness. This is a pervasive problem plaguing the young and the old alike, causing stunted growth not only at individual level, but also at the societal level. Passivity has had the least attention of psychologists and maybe that’s why there is no clear cut way to overcome it. A clear understanding of this inertness is essential to successful start of healthy relationships, healthy physical self and high self-esteem.
What is a “state of inaction”?
I have always wanted to be the owner of a ripped and fit body. Who doesn’t want? I read a lot about the tools and actions that will lead me to the intended consequence. However, when it comes to putting the words to practice, I somehow find a well-defined excuse that “prevents me from doing so”. Hence, that ripped and fit body remains elusive. There is no lack of motivation, or knowledge or facilities. The only thing that lacks here is action. A state of inaction pervades and although I am reasonably successful and intelligent, the true happiness evades me.
Passivity is a tendency, acquired with time, to be half-hearted in most of your commitments, leaving people far from satisfied with their lives. These people are mostly confused, and always view the glass as half-empty. Inaction deals with not doing, not responding, not owning up, not taking risks and not accepting the reality as it is. You would want something, and are willing to devote yourself for that cause, but that’s about it. When it comes to acting for the same, you are at loss of ideas.
The danger with passivity
The biggest danger associated with inertness is that people somehow find a way to satisfy themselves and others in leading a mediocre life. They play tricks on themselves, and amplify their achievements to make up for the failures. For instance, I always cite my “busy schedule” as a reason for not being able to give enough time to my body. My professional achievements help me mask any dissatisfaction arising and keep me away from the necessary action.
If you want further signs of passivity, look no further than your work-life balance or “imbalance”, as it might suit you. A passive person is always dealing with huge amount of stress regarding his future plans as deep down he has this fear of accomplishing a task. This fear is a strong obstacle between getting things done as it makes us think negatively of the road ahead-embarrassment, failure, discomfort and pain, leaving us in a frozen state of inaction.
Overcoming the passivity
Climbing out of the well of passivity isn’t easy and that I can tell you from my personal experience. Identifying and accepting that you suffer from a psychological inertia is the first step in a positive direction. Next, you need to stop settling for ordinary. However poor or rich you may be, there are times in life when you would have felt important, when your existence made a difference. You might have felt proud of your existence and people who know you might have felt proud of you. Remember those times and stop settling for anything that makes you any lesser man or woman than you were. Not only you deserve better, people who know you also deserve a much better you.
Being more assertive
The journey from being a passive individual to a more assertive one is not an easy one. You have to give up on chronic negative emotions such as anger, self-pity, introversion, and confusion. Your first enemy will be fear.
The best strategy to cope up with the same is to accept it. Instead of resisting your fear, face it, understand it and conquer it. Just refuse to fight the fear, and put all your attention in the task at hand whether it is changing jobs, careers or improving your physical state of body. It would require careful practice to cope with fear. Each time you move forward, give a pat on back and remind that you have got a long way to go.
Remind yourself what you wanted to be
After gaining a little momentum, the passive person automatically starts reconnecting with his true self. Remember the moment when you realized your true calling and what you actually want to be. Till now your passive personality prevented you from viewing it as an achievable target, but now as your life gains energy and excitement, everything looks possible.
Identify the distractions
The final step that will complete your life-changing exercise will be identifying the perpetrators of your passivity. Find the distractions and detractors, which might be anything from your work, to an emotionally taxing relationship or even your children. Work through any excuse that you might have used till now to achieve the end goal.
Having done all of the above, you can experience an immensely positive change in your life and start living it in a much more meaningful manner.
Photo credit: smerikal