Aibu to feel a bit hurt about this silly comment?(36 Posts)
Been going to a life coach type person for a few sessions regarding difficulties I'm having with masters exams. The coach is really good and I like him. For context I am pretty academic, have received top results throughout school and university.
We were talking about the exams and my passing them. In all honesty I'm predicted a good mark and have been achieving good marks. But always go on about my worries re taking them and I think they've misinterpreted it slightly, they think I'm struggling to pass. They made a comment, obviously meant positively today about how "some people are naturally clever, some have to work hard". I obviously fall in the latter group according to them.
I know I shouldn't care about one person's opinion and equally shouldn't place so much weight on it but feel a bit hurt. Want to childishly confirm to them I am naturally clever too! Ironically I rode on the back of this for years; didn't really study but still did well. Now I'm struggling because I actually need to study to do well...
I think you are feeling insecure - do you feel the need to prove yourself a lot? Someone made you feel that way? Sounds like you are a naturally high achiever and it's an important part of how you define yourself - this comment has rocked your boat a bit? Sounds flippant to me - good luck with your exams xxxxx
Do you think that if he'd said 'some people are naturally clever, some have to work hard- how do you see yourself?' You'd have reflected as you have and wouldn't be feeling bad?
Thank you v much.
Yes, I'm feeling a bit insecure I think. Sorry to sound so navel-gazing Think it's because I've always defined myself as quite clever and high-achieving, and now exam issues are threatening that image a bit. In my sessions I've always played things down a bit regarding how I've done in education in the past (firstly it's not that relevant as its in the past and secondly obviously lots of people are better than me) but I childishly feel like i deserve some acknowledgement for what I have done Also worked really hard to try and get into a good career next year and have played that down a bit too so as not to show off.
Sorry if I sound really arrogant, I'm panicking now that he thinks I'm stupid but a grafter! Not that there's obviously anything wrong with that anyway <what am I on about>
seriouslyffs yes definitely, I just feel like he's put me in a box but that's not necessarily who I am.
valdeeves haha thank you, I thought that you meant that originally
I think you are being overly sensitive, but you could do with finding out WHY. Why should you be bothered by some ones ' off the cuff ' remark when you have obtained such excellent results?
Do you think that perhaps you did not receive enough unconditional love and encouragement from your parents?
A course in Mindfulless would maybe help you with relaxing as you do sound a bit of a worrier. It doesn't really matter what the coach thinks of you does it? I think they were trying to gently reassure you.
Once you have your Masters it is unlikely that you will ever see them again anyway.
Once you have got it, you can always go back and wave your degree certificate at them, lol.
Think it's because I've always defined myself as quite clever and high-achieving
that was always how i defined myself, then i got a job i completely failed in. It completely floored me.
it was horrible, you have my full sympathy
Thank you. Sorry trying not to be too identifying here but they are actually a therapist so this is why I've taken it to heart a bit
Thanks passiveaggressive can I ask how you got round it?
This person is actually a therapist as mentioned but I feel reluctant to tell them about how I define myself as clever (or whatever) because I don't want to seem like I'm showing off! Haha that makes no sense does it
Is he a therapist or a life coach? Maybe he's not very good...
I have never recovered my cocky i am fantastic state, still very self doubting, which was why i didn't comment before (hopeing you wouldn't ask).
A therapist. Sorry I said a life coach to change a few details for anyonymity, he is good and I've got on with him well etc. But just feel a bit floored by that comment really. I feel like I haven't properly explained things to him and just feel a bit upset that he clearly thinks I'm a bit stupid really... Is it worth saying anything during the next session??
Ah no passiveaggressive really sorry to hear that It's a horrible feeling isn't it, you're used to being good at most things you do and not having to try, then you have something you can't excel at - it's shit
"Maybe he's not very good..."
I agree with this. Forgive me if I've got this wrong, but I've interpreted your comments that you are reasonably confident about passing with good grades - but you struggle with the actual concept of 'doing exams'?
So your life coach/therapist should be helping you with the 'exam' scenario, rather than questioning your academic ability.
i feel like this and then i realise that i've been doing myself down, so other people listen and form an opinion of me based on what i've been saying. then i get annoyed / upset that they could think that and upon reflection i realised that it's come from me. i don't put myself down anymore.
could this be a bit of what's happened?
It's difficult to judge a therapist as good or bad, if you aren't being honest and downplaying things that are relevant to the reason you are seeing him.
He may take a different approval of he knows you are a naturally high achiever who is struggling with the fact it's not coming easy at the moment. Rather than someone who has always had to work hard and struggling to maintain that level.
You also can't expect him to know who you really are if you aren't showing it.
Fru yes that's it, thank you you've articulated perfectly what I've been struggling to put into words. Basically I've had a bit of a break from university due to exam stress and struggling to get back into a routine. But I'm reasonably confident I will get good marks overall as I have in previous years if I can (a) do some work and (b) attend!
Eddie spot on!!! I think I foolishly thought that because he's a therapist he would read between the lines but I do feel like I've been doing myself a disservice. Don't want to sound like I'm boasting and also v aware that my achievements are minimal compared to many so don't want to sound as if I'm bigging myself up?! If that makes any sense
Thanks everyone! I'd like to say something but not sure how to say it without sounding like I'm shoehorning it into our session?
Well, take the 'best' comments from this thread (!) and have a conversation with him about that.
Something along the lines of "I'm not struggling with my academic ability, I suffer from 'exam stress' and need help with that
and that's what I'm paying you for."
Surely it's an obvious way to start the next session, OP? The therapist could potentially find it useful as a way into discussing your ongoing difficulties.
And you need to take some responsibility for how you present yourself in sessions - have you actually been downplaying your achievements? He/she only sees you in a room for 50 minutes, and can't really objectively know you're an academic high achiever if you don't say so.
Oh gosh ennis absolutely, I know it's my fault really and I'm certainly not holding the therapist accountable. It's my first time doing a session like this really so wasn't sure what to expect.
Yes, I will be more honest about things going forward.
Sorry, hit send too soon. I had the opposite problem with a counsellor years ago. She was overly impressed by my achievements and misread my unhappiness as me 'being terribly hard on myself', when in fact both my achievements and my need to push myself work wise were completely standard for a junior academic (doctorate, publications, incredibly long hours etc). Her being impressed meant she misread me as insanely driven and self-critical and obsessed with status when in fact I was low-powered by the standards of the field.
No worries, thank you though ennis - can totally understand how that would be equally frustrating! I honestly don't want him to be impressed or anything by me (and indeed don't think I have much there to be impressed about!), just wish he understood my motivation for therapy a bit more. I know it's a bit pathetic that I put so much value on other people's opinions of me.
I don't think it's pathetic - it's important not to have the reason you're in therapy misunderstood if you're to get the best out of your sessions. On the other hand, is that what is actually bothering you? Or are you in fact overly dependent for your sense of self on other people's opinion of you?
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