A Deep Dive into Self-Gaslighting: We all do it.

Not far beneath the surface of our inner world, there's a quiet battle that we often don't even recognize. It's a struggle between who we truly are and who we think we should be. A fight where pitfalls slowly engulf our self-confidence.

We shove internal questions and doubts under the rug, hoping they'll disappear on their own. The risk of losing ourselves in the process often goes unnoticed. It's a battle that has occupied a prominent place in our inner world for centuries and has only recently been given a name: self-gaslighting.

In the first chapter of this book, we learn to recognize self-gaslighting. We carefully lift the rug under which our doubts hide.

At the same time, we crank up the volume of the inner voice that encourages you to grow a bit louder. We give that nagging feeling a voice. We unravel that knot in your stomach and gently peel away the layers of conditioning and self-doubt, temporarily silencing the mouth of our inner critic with duct tape.

While almost everyone recognizes and acknowledges the term "gaslighting" as behavior that causes serious emotional and psychological harm, the term "self-gaslighting" has a fairly high middle-finger quotient.

After all, we assume that gaslighting is a tactic where someone intentionally creates doubt, causing you to question your own memories and perceptions or your common sense. You find yourself increasingly doubting your sense of reality.

I can almost hear you thinking: I'm not playing mind games with myself. That wouldn't make sense. And you're right. It wouldn't make sense.

However, the behavior of someone who gaslights isn't always intended to undermine someone else. Fear and uncertainty can also lead a person to make unclear choices. This person may not have the capacity to consider others, purely focused on survival.

The behavior of this survival specialist is almost identical to the gaslighter who deliberately feeds their own confidence with your doubt and uncertainty.

So, it's crucial to distinguish between the gaslighter who intentionally brings you down, creates total self-confusion, and desires nothing more than complete control over you and the situation—and the survival specialist who is simply trying to survive. The same applies to self-gaslighting.

You would never consciously put yourself in situations where the likelihood of a broken heart would be almost certain.

You would never consciously deceive yourself, leading to total self-confusion. You would never consciously doubt yourself.

You want nothing more than for your head and heart to be aligned, so decision-making and choices become easier.

And yet... you recognize that inner struggle where you no longer dare to trust yourself.

You come up with excuses for others' behavior while blaming yourself for everything.

When you make a mistake, you're convinced it says something about who you are as a person.

You don't fully trust your own decision-making abilities.

You frequently doubt your own judgment and drawn conclusions.

You doubt yourself and place a significant value on others' opinions.

As a result, you often seek confirmation.

Let's dive in even a little bit deeper... Do you recognize this?

  • You ignore your own emotions.
  • You've convinced yourself that you're oversensitive and often react excessively.
  • You downplay your own traumatic memories: "Others had it worse. Mine wasn't that bad."
  • You often tell yourself, "It wasn't that bad."
  • "He/she probably didn't mean it that way."
  • "I understand why they don't listen to me. I often ramble and am often unclear."
  • "I should be over this by now."
  • "I kind of asked for it. I was quite the pain in the butt."
  • "Maybe I should give him/her another chance. It's not fair of me to lump everyone together and compare to... after all, everyone is different."
  • "Maybe if I had given it more chance, then..."
  • "Maybe he/she is not ready yet. Maybe I need more patience."

Hiding from your pain and sorrow is self-gaslighting. Convincing yourself that you simply aren't born for luck, happiness and/or love is self-gaslighting.

The habit of not listening to yourself, rushing past yourself because there's so much going on? Not taking time for yourself, because you're busy and needed?

This all self-gaslighting.

(the next chapter of this book will be uploaded soon. Make sure you follow along)

Like this story?
Join World Pulse now to read more inspiring stories and connect with women speaking out across the globe!
Leave a supportive comment to encourage this author
Tell your own story
Explore more stories on topics you care about