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  1. #11
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dwigie View Post
    1. You start to imitate their demeanor(ex: talk faster, copy accents..)
    2. Your mood immediately shifts to suit the visitor momentarily..
    3. You feel that their words are "penetrating?" and that you can't escape.
    These don't ring true for me. Of course I try to put the person at ease, but that is usually done by my eye contact and interest in them. I don't experience mood shifts or demeanor changes, although I used to be a chameleon like this when I was younger. I didn't know myself or really have a solid identity of my own yet.

  2. #12
    Content. Content? DigitalMethod's Avatar
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    So how did you Jennifer, and disregard, build an identity of yourself? How did you gain a sense of "me"?
    "The life of the individual has meaning only insofar as it aids in making the life of every living thing nobler and more beautiful."
    - Albert Einstein

  3. #13
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    I rarely say this, but that question's too hard for me to answer.

  4. #14
    Content. Content? DigitalMethod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by disregard View Post
    I rarely say this, but that question's too hard for me to answer.
    "The life of the individual has meaning only insofar as it aids in making the life of every living thing nobler and more beautiful."
    - Albert Einstein

  5. #15
    Senior Member Chris_in_Orbit's Avatar
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    Trying to define the self are you? What makes you think there is a true self beneath the "chameleon facades" that many of us adapt into our lives? (I'm not trying to criticize you, I just want to know what you honestly think)

    I may still have some things that I can still relate to a younger self but depending on how you define the "self" I think I have changed myself quite a bit..

  6. #16
    Senior Member niki's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalMethod View Post
    So how did you Jennifer, and disregard, build an identity of yourself? How did you gain a sense of "me"?
    wow..actually, i've been asking pretty much about the same thing, in my newest thread, regarding my being indecisive & 'wishy-washy' all too often, because i still don't seem to have a SOLID identity of myself! it can keep changing, like a 'chameleon', and what's worse is, i often can't put into final of who's the rightest, and the wrongest! (i always like to keep options OPEN, which unfortunately, really backfired me in the REAL-world, especially in a very important opinions!).

    indeed, that's why i also want to ask the same question as Digital Method's.
    how did you build an identity of yourself, a SOLID one?
    how did you gain a REAL sense of "me" , without a faltering, swaying doubts?

    did you just 'know' it?
    but what if what you 'know' all this time...is actually false? and that other people are the correct ones? (see, this is really bed, because in the end, NOTHING is being decided, and i even have a tendency to just 'quickly' avoid it, when it becomes so troublesome!)

  7. #17
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DigitalMethod View Post
    So how did you Jennifer, and disregard, build an identity of yourself? How did you gain a sense of "me"?
    ha ha... let me find myself and I will get back to you.

    --

    Chris_in_orbit hinted at it later, and I can't tell you which process is "more right." Probably both.

    But we both must discover ourselves and we also must create ourselves.

    There are things we instinctively feel and think but that we ignore or repress and sometimes even then eventually "forget" about ourselves. And yet meanwhile we are also trying things on and seeing how they fit. And sometimes even doing things that seem totally beyond our self-expectations and those choices change us irrevocably.

    Trying to keep this tied to the "chameleon" part of the OP, eventually I think people reach a point where, if they have repressed parts of themselves enough, they become utterly miserable. Then they need to find a way to cope with the pain.

    1. They kill their desire permanently, crush the inner self, because they are too scared to stop meeting expectations and it hurts too bad to wish for other things. People die inside when this happens, but their external world is stable... as much as it can be if your world is based on the choices of others. Ricky's mother in American Beauty seems like an EXTREME example of this type, but we know a lot of people who are functional who still have made the same choice to murder themselves inside.

    2. They rebel outwardly and shove back against external expectations. This is typical of midlife crisis and violent upheavals in people's lives. The inner self takes total precedence, and the external is attacked if it tries to impose any more.

    3. There is a more middle road, where people try to weed through things and keep the good and abandon the dross and try to figure out what resonates with them too.

    I think ultimately it comes down to courage and how much one is willing to risk in order to find oneself. I do not think we are ever trapped, the cage is always open and we can walk out when we want. It's just that we have to leave a lot of what's in the cage behind, and it's scary being in the open world with no strictures that tell you what to do, no one to "chameleon" anymore, having to somehow "be yourself" and letting others respond to it.

    If you want to be free of the "chameleon" thing, you have to be willing to let OTHER people be in control of their reactions. (Essentially the mirroring strategy is a means of controlling others to receive you positively, even while partly you still do probably enjoy making others feel at ease and comfortable.)

    Sorry, that is ambiguous, the discussion can keep going but that is all I can say right now, my brain's getting a little fuzzy... (caffeine time. )
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  8. #18
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    I acquired a real sense of self and separateness and solidity when I weathered the storms of life--by myself, and made it out--by myself.

  9. #19
    Senior Member niki's Avatar
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    Jennifer, that is really interesting!
    please continue further! i'd like to know!
    and it's perhaps can be related with my newest thread about being "indecisive & wishy-washy" and 'how' to really eliminate it.

  10. #20
    Senior Member Kyrielle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dwigie View Post
    When someone talks to you, or interacts with you any other way...
    1. You start to imitate their demeanor(ex: talk faster, copy accents..)
    2. Your mood immediately shifts to suit the visitor momentarily..
    3. You feel that their words are "penetrating?" and that you can't escape.
    4. You do your best to make them at "ease".
    But with all that accommodation, as soon as they leave you go on straight to your starting point, whatever that was.
    ^^Basically you develop over 15 facades a day that you shed one after the other and we could say that deep down, none of this has actually affected you in any way?You're pretty "hard and unshakable" in there.
    I do some of these things. I find that if I hear someone talk a lot, after a few days I'll start integrating some of their speech patterns into my own. It's really embarrassing when I catch myself doing a "trademark" pattern, and I tend to hope no one's noticed.

    Yes. It DOES really affect me. I know after I meet someone and I integrate one of their mannerisms that it will be with me for many years. And I cannot help doing it.

    Which leads me to think that our core self is merely a basic set of tendencies. The rest is a giant mish-mash of everything and everyone we've ever encountered. Our beliefs, thoughts, mannerisms are all influenced by these experiences, but how we apply and integrate them is filtered through our tendencies. We are unique only because the specific combination of experiences used by our "tendency set" is very difficult to be completely mirrored by anyone else--there are just too many variables.
    "I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference."

    Robert Frost

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