Sometimes a glance can be enough to lose concentration or good judgment. As long as there is a supervisor, a teacher, a boss or any figure of power to observe you, and consequently go immediately into the ball. You start doing everything wrong, things fall out of your hands, your mind goes blank and you can’t react quickly. The only thing you can do is trip over your words and actions.
On other occasions, it is not the gaze of a person of power that triggers these reactions in you, but an aggressive or intimidating message. Like when they ask you a question hard or criticize with insistence and with a touch of cruelty something you have done. This may be enough to block your responsiveness, triggering a gigantic insecurity or even paralysis.
Later, looking back on what happened, it will seem absurd to you that you have not been able to react in an adult way. You will realize that the situation bothers you, fills you with anger and frustration, and you will end up blaming yourself for what happened. Yet when a similar situation arises, you will behave the same way again, starting this vicious circle all over again.
You go into the balloon due to internal and external pressures
There are two types of pressures: external and internal. The external ones correspond to what has just been described, or when a power figure directly affects your way of speaking or your actions.
If someone tries to exert a strong influence on you with the intent of intimidating or inhibiting you, it is external pressure. Usually they are people who do not make this purpose clear : they justify themselves under the pretext of seeking higher quality, better time optimization or an improvement in your training.
The external pressure is not enough to reach the goal if it is not supplemented by another type of pressure, the internal one. The second, the most obvious, coincides with the desire to please the power figure.
This is often expressed through a state of anxiety in responding to the expectations of the aforementioned figure. It is a type of internal pressure that can be accompanied by others, such as wanting to maintain the image of a competent person or, simply, trying not to fall into ridicule in front of others. The attempt is not to get hurt that could damage our self-esteem.
Go into the balloon at the exact moment all of these pressures are unleashed at the same time. It is a matter of seconds, and when it happens, you are not aware of everything that is at stake in these situations. It will simply seem like a need, in the form of a look, a question, a comment and you will not be able to react. You will feel like a “scolded child” who did not do what was asked of him and did not have the strength to react, to reject this conditioning.
It is possible that in such situations you are only trying to exonerate yourself. A pen falls from your hand and you tremble with a nervous smile and, without knowing the reason, you end up agreeing to the one who is speaking to you, apologizing for your clumsiness or you remain silent, starting a process of self-flagellation within you.
You go into the balloon because you have an unhealed wound
All your psychological limitations, whatever they are, are not “factory defects”. They are the product of what makes you feel insecure, of a weak point that indicates the place where a fear lurks. They may be one or more events that have occurred in your past, still unresolved and that indicate that in that situation you risk being in difficulty.
A plausible explanation for your bewilderment in times of pressure is that you have lived in the midst of situations where contempt, humiliation, and undevaluation were predominant. Probably in your family, at school or in the places where you grew up you were constantly exposed to criticism or you had a traumatic experience that marked your existence: the loss of a parent, an illness, a physical disability, etc.
You go into the balloon and freeze when you agree to behave like the submissive and scared child you were long ago. Behind such a psychological block, there are two components: fear and guilt.
Is there a way out? Yes of course. In fact it can be a fascinating path, a wonderful challenge after which to grow it is enough to use one’s own reality. The ultimate goal is to get to that sensitive point, and get strengthened with it, before you get there because of someone else. Don’t wait for circumstances to put you in a paralyzing situation for you. Do it yourself, so that you are in control of what is happening around you and, consequently, be able to win out of that situation, one step at a time.