When you act according to the will of another person and suppress your own wishes,you have identified a part of yourself with the other person. You have let them intoyour mind, as your master. You have become fragmented. One of the main ways thiscomes about is through invalidation, or 'making wrong'. If somebody says your effortwas 'not good enough' or that you 'shouldn't have done that', then you start to questionyourself. You begin to introspect and ask, 'Is there something wrong with me?' Whenanother person wrongly evaluates or misunderstands your communications or yourstate of mind, naturally this is upsetting. It means the other has not understood you.Your enthusiasm wanes. You may accept this false evaluation - perhaps because of theauthority or dominance of the other person. If you ignore your own feelings and believethey must be right, you begin to follow their will, not your own. A part of you hasidentified with the other person and split from the real you. The you that is responsiblefor your choices.This very commonly occurs with children, where they take on the characteristics of their parents. It is also very frequent in relationships where one partner adjusts to matchthe other's expectations. And of course it happens at work too. When our goals aresuppressed by another - however well meant - it is eventually life destroying. Negativeevaluations (personal criticisms, opinions) by another especially at times of stress cancause extreme upset.
Practical: How to handle invalidations
There are many and various ways you might have been put-down by others and as aresult agreed to have less power. You need to look again at what happened and ask yourself:1. What choices did I make? Consider:a. What did I decide about myself ?b. What did I decide about the other person or other people?c. What did I choose to think?d. How did I choose to feel? What emotion did I choose?e. What did I choose to do?f. How did my choices affect my behavior going forward?2. What other choices could I have made? And what might the effect of each of thosechoices be?3. What positive learning can I get from this experience?