The Blessing of Insecurity

When I was younger, much younger, I was extremely insecure.  Maybe at that age it was raging hormones and the lack of experience that made me so.  But now that I am older, much older, I am still insecure. It might still be the hormones, or lack thereof, but I think not.  I have had my share of experiences, but nothing has changed.

When I was younger, maybe a need for approval from my peers and parents or simply my adolescent lack of self-identity was the underlying cause of my insecurity.  But now I am older; I know who I am, who I am not, and I really do not look to others for approval.  Yet, I still feel insecure. Tempered somewhat, but still there.  So, that can’t be it.

Maybe it is a feeling that I lack control of my own destiny.  Read the news and it is easy to feel that way.  Get on a plane.  Wonder if the pilot is angry at life.  Just don’t do it at 35,000 feet.  Go into a movie theatre in the U.S. to see a comedy and end up witnessing a real life tragedy.  End up in a traffic jam with someone behind you experiencing road rage.  Ride a packed New York City subway and here someone sneeze.  Spend time with the elderly whose conversation eternally revolves around disease, death and a broken medical system.   Listen to inept politicians.  These are good reasons to feel insecure; feel a lack of control.  But clearly a lack of control is not the reason.  Anyone who knows me, knows that. 

I did not really know much in my adolescence.  Who does?  I thought that the approval of others would affirm my self-image and subdue my insecurity.   It did not.  Smoldering underneath, it did not matter that my peers seemed to accept me.  Always there, in the back of my mind was this sense of inadequacy.   I am older and a little bit wiser now.  More than most, I have had my share of experiences, but that doesn’t seem to help. I still feel insecure.  And, while I hate the idea of the lack of control, it has never been a primary issue with me.  I am as close to a prepper as one can be without being obsessed.   So, what the heck is going on?  Is ignorance really the pathway to bliss and a sense of security?  I think not.

For me, the answer is straightforward.  I need to be insecure.  It is the driving force that pushes me forward.  It is not the kindling for the fire in my belly.  It is the fire.   It pushes me to board the plane not knowing the pilot, ignore the insane on the road (though I might comment out load to myself behind closed windows), ride the packed subway and take care of my health and ignore my age.  It drives me to just be prepared for the unexpected versus being afraid of the unknown.

You might ask, “Ken, what does this have to do with the Greater Impact Foundation?”  Well, maybe it is a stretch, but it seems that those that are over confidant, even defiant about their ability to succeed in circumstances largely stacked against them are the least likely to succeed and those that are constantly questioning their choices, constantly worried about intended outcomes, constantly seeking alternative paths to their endgame are the most likely to succeed and if that is not emblematic of insecurity I do not know what is.  Yes, there is a wisdom to those who are always questioning, always unsure that their choices are the best.  Do you have to be insecure to be like that?  Of course not! But it sure works for me.