What Is Insecurity
All of us have, at one point or another, dealt with feelings of self-doubt, of worry over not measuring up in any number of categories, or not feeling safe mentally or physically. All of these negative influences fall under the umbrella of insecurity.
For some, insecurity is an occasional roadblock; one that causes us to second-guess ourselves or reevaluate our situations. For others, it is a constant burden that increases stress levels and negatively affects mood, relationships, the pursuit of goals and overall quality of life.
At The Midtown Practice, our experienced clinicians can help you identify and cope with insecurities – in any form they manifests in your life – and give you tools to work through them in order to become more confident and self-assured.
Causes of Insecurity
Insecurity can be triggered in numerous ways, and much depends on age, environment, past traumas, guilt and the capacity to handle stress and fear.
A common source of insecurity is the workplace. In our professional lives, we are charged with completing any number of tasks – some simple, others more complex – that challenge us at every turn. Each of these tasks and responsibilities offer the opportunity to feel insecure—whether it be the fear of failure that creeps in during moments of stress, or the relationships and politics that often come with working with others. Factor in the importance of income that’s attached to a job, and the possibility of losing that income, and the workplace proves a veritable minefield of insecurity triggers.
Personal relationships, too, can bring about self-doubt and worry that leads to insecurity. Spending time with friends, family, romantic partners or acquaintances who make us question our own value can cause us to feel negative emotions about ourselves and our situations. Sometimes the dynamics that lead us to feel insecure in personal relationships are tied to childhood experiences and upbringing in which we, as children, do not receive the sense of support necessary to form self-confidence and establish healthy attachments.
Among younger people – acclimating to social dynamics at school and, overall, forging their own sense of self – insecurity can be triggered by difficulty making friends, dealing with friction that sometimes exists between classmates, facing new experiences that are new and daunting, succeeding in academics and even body and image issues that can cause shame and embarrassment.
Some insecurity stems from exposure to fear of harm. Abusive relationships, dangerous work environments, and living in locations where crime or even political instability create the possibility of physical harm can instill feelings of fear for one’s wellbeing.
At The Midtown Practice, our clinicians are experienced in helping clients cope with myriad types of insecurity and their many causes. We work with each client to identify and neutralize the triggers that cause their self-doubts and fears, while helping to encourage confidence and self-worth.
What Insecurity Does to Us
Those who find they constantly face self-doubt and insecurity on a regular basis can find that they shrink from the causes of those feelings. For many who feel intense social insecurity, taking on avoidant personality traits – steering clear of social situations whenever possible and feeling nervousness and panic when unable to avoid them – can cause a negative impact on quality of life.
In the workplace, insecurity can make it difficult to establish good working relationships with colleagues, which makes it more difficult to be an effective part of a team. Self-doubt can also stand in the way of bringing you’re A-game while on the job—it’s difficult to do great work when your fears of inadequacy cause you to focus primarily on simply avoiding failure. In the same vein, there are those who do not fear failure as much as they do imperfection. For them, no accomplishment is sufficient to evade the feeling of self-doubt and insecurity.
When insecurity is pervasive in your life, it can cause more harmful negative outcomes to take hold. Many who face constant insecurity may slip into depression or intense anxiety. These afflictions can bring on symptoms detrimental to physical health, like high blood pressure, loss of sleep, headaches, digestive issues, eating disorders, and even self-isolation and detachment from supportive social networks of friends, family and loved ones. Feeling insecurity due to almost constant fear of physical harm can lead to emotional trauma.
At The Midtown Practice, our experience working with clients who suffer from insecurities allows us to track how much self-doubt and fear has taken over, and whether it has led to more serious symptoms of depression and anxiety. In each case, we seek to address the root issues; allowing our clients to improve their lives from within.