I'm not talking about 'self-denial' as such, but rather the opposite of self-acceptance; non-self-acceptance if you like. Basically, I'll often go through phases where I have a problem with any given aspect of myself; I'll reflect on an event that I was a part of, and I'll think to myself "I didn't like the way I reacted to it". So I make a conscious effort to change the way I react to said event next time it occurs. For example, I'll become too enthusiastic about something; jumping ahead of myself. Then I think "I should be more perturbed and reserved"; this is purely instinctive, and seems not to have a rational basis, other than preserving my external image. It's not about getting approval from those around me, it's about doing something for myself; for my own sake. So for a short time I'll keep this reserved exterior. But my true self always comes through. Always. I'll get more loud, more excitable, more enthusiastic, expansive and aggressive in my speech and intonations, or whatever. I simply cannot keep a 'reserved' exterior. It's not a part of me. And yet I'll continue to have these feelings now and then about how I need to do or become certain things in order to reach a state of self-contentedness. I refuse to accept my inherent characteristics, knowing that many of them will only get me into trouble, and yet gradually, they always come back to me. They control me; I don't control them. It's a constant issue I'm grappling with. Does anyone else have this?