I see my life as balance scale. My personal growth has been centered around trying to equalize it. Too often, I go to the extreme and place all my weight on just one side. In an effort to balance it again, I place an even greater weight on the other side. There is still no equilibrium; I have only changed which side is heavier. I live my life in this way.
Let me use an example. Pretend there is someone who’s angry at me for talking too much and dominating the conversation. I’ll immediately clam up and become silent, appearing unfriendly. There’s a minor freak-out burning within me. My bitterness towards my own behavior comes out towards others. Then, when there seems to be animosity towards my chilly demeanor, I try to compensate by becoming radiantly cheerful. I think it comes off as completely fake. So, the cycle begins again.
Or, another example, more long-term, could be my academic performance. I became obsessed with my grades and punished myself whenever I made a mistake. When I started accepting myself more, I completely swung the other way and stopped caring about my performance altogether.
It becomes frustrating trying to balance the scale and trying to stabilize this pendulum. I’ve gotten infinitely better at it – and it feels amazingly freeing – but it still happens. When it does, it’s hard to get out of it. I get in an emotional hole, and I have to figure out how to climb out without digging myself further in.
Think about your own balances. When you act inappropriately, do you try to overcompensate and thus become inappropriate in an opposite sense? How can you still your pendulum? Experiment with different ways to subdue the burning freak-out within you until you find something that really works.