Most of us carry around something which we call the I, the image we want others to see, know or accept about us. We protect, nourish, and toil to maintain, if not for more time surpass to the superlative image we hold about ourseleves.
Self image when threatended affects the behavior of the person. Some would try to maintain a positive self image by doing a set of actions which would stenghten and be confidence building measures of their I, but for others it could create acute inferiority complex. In either case there is a noticeable measure of degradation of their performance, if not worse in the later.
We tend to perform well or at our optimal level when there is less expectations or when the expectation is only from a few people. This is a class of people whose performance is affected by what others think and hold their self images so important. There are few others who perform at their optimal level when the work is given to them casually as everyday task, but who doesnt perform well when then same work is given and being told it is of grave and utmost importance.
Even people who are exceptionally good in a specific work they do and had been workig for years and years on the same can be challenged under pressure. They are confident but still if they accomodate the slightest room of confirming the negativity , it is like a virus uncontrolled and affects the overall performance.
So what happens is a sequence of these steps
1. Society creates a need for self identity while growing.
2. So an image of the self is created.
3. Manuring and Nurturing of the image continues and that image is believed over time to be true self.
4. This image becomes closer to you than anyone else and is thus unconsciously the most precious thing.
5. Everyone has a similar image , sometimes conflicting and hence when they come in contact, each of them feel their image is threatened, fear is invited.
6. A need to protect the image then takes shape, and even without worrying to improve, much of the time is thereafter spent in protecting the image with reasons, excuses, or improving other faculties of oneself to continue building these protective walls.
7. Once set in that mode, the subject fails to understand that these walls are built with bricks of fear and his whole attention is to look through these pores rather than improve what he has.
8. The focus turns from performing to conformance of negativity. Like a juggler in a crowd looking for people who he thinks would want him to fail. Even simple tasks or tasks which was done with relatively less energy and time now requires enormous amount of time and energy because of the stress self imposed.
9. The act of looking outside in search of a negative conformance believing that it exist and believing it will affect is anxiety. Feeling a sense of safety you found it, just keeps you anxious, but for some not having found it but still in search causes the phobias and paranoias.
Measuring Success, by others words creates anxiety
Measuring Success, by inner listening is improvement