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It's okay now to be seen, oh hurt little one.

Anything related to matters of the mind

Late Bloomer

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Apr 17, 2018
Soundtrack for this post is the song "The Real Me" from the Who's Quadrophenia.

There was a hurt little kid who tried to figure out what it would take for him to be better, so that people wouldn't have to be so mean to him any more.

What he didn't realize, as he was only a naive and hurt little kid back then, was that the hurtful people did hurtful things because THEY were wrong. Not because HE was wrong.

He didn't understand that bullies, bad parents and relatives, and other destructive people, often have false accusations against their victims. The false accusation of the bully, abuser, etc. is: "I have no power to control my own attitudes and actions, but you have infinite power to make me behave badly, just by your existing and not being good enough." This accusation is something any adult can easily see is a meaningless lie. But, understanding this can be a thought that's out of reach to a kid that hurts.

When we hurt, it's natural to want to not have to feel that bad any more. So we try to identify what was the cause and effect, so we can control the cause and not have to suffer the effect any more.

Unfortunately, if we have bad information about how cause and effect works, we can try to control something that doesn't actually cause or control the effects of interest. Another drawback to human nature, is that if the effect is emotionally intense enough, our perception of cause and effect can be an emotional state that never is put into words. Therefore we can't use our full minds to evaluate the idea and consider whether it is still timely, relevant, helping us.

What the kid learned emotionally is this rule: If people really see me, some of them will hurt me. So it's best if I'm invisible.

I don't mean only light waves bouncing off an object, which happens to be a person, and into another another person's retina. I mean BEING SEEN in the deeper sense of someone knowing who someone else really is, what they are truly like, what are their interests and personal traits, what qualities do they have, etc.

The person who's been victimized twice - by the original attack or incident, and then again by believing the lie that somehow the victim's failures to BE good enough, CAUSED the attacker's failures to DO good enough actions as to not hurt their fellow human being - such a victim can start to emotionally believe that hiding, not being seen, being invisible, is a necessary precondition of safety.

About two decades ago I wanted to find out what is involved in this totally mysterious and wacky area called marketing.

About one decade ago I found out. Since then I've been learning all kinds of great techniques from Halbert, Abraham, Kennedy, Levinson, a bunch of people who are very effective... at INCREASING VISIBLITY, through advertising and publicity INCLUDING to people who are NOT great customers thrileld at the chance to buy now. In fact, they all acknowledge that a GREAT campaign could reach an audience in whom 95% are not enthusiastic enough to get them to buy now!

So I had all this great information on how to BE MORE VISIBILE TO PEOPLE WHO DON'T CARE. And for some inexplicable reason, I didn't act on it. It bugged the hell out of me. It bugged the hell out of my woman, and made her upset, discouraged, angry and frightened about my inaction on all these obviously great ideas and techniques! Neither of us could figure out what would make me finally follow through!

A few years ago I found this book with cool car stories and metaphors, and a clever acronym for commandments about which lane you can choose to build your business. And reading MJ's compelling stories and advice, I STILL didn't do it!

A couple of years ago I used Meetup to find some local business networking groups. I circulated and told people what I wanted to do. They were excited and positive. And I didn't follow up and I stopped going! I hated myself for my mysterious not-doing that had no point! My roommate was pissed off at the fact that I caught up on the bills eventually but kept having the delays with nothing happening in terms of income!

Not thinking it was going to make a difference in business, I returned to some depth psychology stuff that has been a major theme in my life for many years. And I discovered the little kid's rule, that INVISIBILITY BUILDS SAFETY because if the bad people can see you, they'll hurt you!

And I got to talk peacefully to that little kid, and explain to him, for the first time anyone kindly talked this over with him, that his rule was not accurate. That bad people do bad things to other people, not because the hurtful people see that others are not good, but because the hurtful people refuse to see that they themselves are not good. That all the times people had lashed out at me, they were NOT seeing the real me at all! They had projected a mirage, invented a caricature, mistook me for the devil inside their own mind, and then attacked that falsehood! It was never about me at all! I was already invisible to the bad guys. They were lashing out and attacking whoever happened to be in front of them at the time. That's what they do whether it's me in front of them or someone else in front of them.

There was nothing about seeing me that actually provoked or caused an attack! If anything about me actually was that awful that I had to be restrained by force, we're in a society where the right thing to do would be to call the cops, and if I'm somehow threatening enough that waiting a few minutes would be life-threatening, to form a posse to hold me til the cops show up. But I NEVER was that kind of a threat or a risk, which is the bullies used their lies as false justification for their attacks on me! And as a little kid, I never did have such awfulness that an adult had NO CHOICE OR OPTION but to be abusive!

Realizing this made me cry a bit. And then it made me realize WHY I'd had all this not-doing about marketing. If invisibility is a (necessary but insufficient) precondition for safety, then why the hell would I want to dramatically increase my visiblity to people I couldn't guarantee beforehand would love me enough to not have to hurt someone as imperfect as me!

I realized, deeply, that today I don't need to be afraid that promotion will make me visible to some peopel who don't care. They are unlikely to enlist the villagers to grab torches and pitchforks to drive the monster (that would be me) into exile!

They are unlikely to violate society's rules of due process in order to make themselves cop, detective, judge, jury, bailiff, and executioner!

If they try that crap now, as an adult I'll call the cops and people around me in a modern society will likely help me drive out the evildoers! But realistically that is not going to happen.

Most likely worst case scenario now is that will someone will say, "Oh, there's some advertisement or personal handshake offered by a guy I don't care about, a message about something that doesn't interest me. So what, I'll turn the page, change the channel, scroll away to see what's next, say 'nice to meet you' and go to the other side of the room!"

I realized, IT IS OKAY TO BE VISIBLE TO THOSE WHO DON'T CARE ABOUT ME. Because there is nothing so shamefully wrong about me that it FORCES bad people to behave destructively! The kid reached a false conclusion because he had incomplete and false accusation to work with. Now that he knows the truth, he can be forgiven, or rather doens't need to be forgiven, but can simply be freed of that false idea.

I got grateful to finally reach this point of emotional healing. And then I got furious about how many missed opportunities I've had from the feeling, don't take that fastlane onramp because it's where bad people will smash into you and destroy you! I got made about how my fears of the occasional bad driver have kept me from getting on the road and staying there! And then I signed up here as a way to start to become visible for purposes of economic success in my life!!

I have seen many discussions of deep seated emotional issues that hold people back in business. I have never seen this one discussed in this way, which is why it took me so many years to figure it out for my own. I hope that my experience will help some other people who, for the sake of their business and happiness, really should be seen!
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