I was reading a blog yesterday in which the author described sitting in a Gestalt circle in which the other members of the circle shout insults, slurs and epithets to see if anything "sticks." The idea is that each person walks away from the circle knowing the truth about their weaknesses and insecurities- those insults that stung. He described the process as abusive and exhausting, but ultimately, extremely rewarding as a means of introspection.
I got to thinking about what insults would stick to me. In the past, I would tell you that if someone had said to me "you talk so much that you annoy people" it would have stuck (and stung). But I realized that I no longer truly fear that or feel it is true. I know that while I am still bubbly and talkative, I have developed enough social sense to know when to zip it and when people are eating it up.
So what would stick now? I really had a hard time coming up with something that would hurt because it was true, or at least because there was enough truth in it to make me uncomfortable. I thought about from 3:30 am to almost 5 am this morning, and I think a hard truth for me right now is that I intentionally hold on to past hurts in order to feel self-righteous or to nurse my wounds. I mean, who cares that someone I deeply trusted betrayed me when I was in fifth grade? I only care 15 years later because I was badly treated when I was right, and when I don't feel good about myself I can hold that up as an example of my enduring goodness and victimitude. And I had never thought about that before this exercise.
And yes, I just made up victimitude.
So. What insult would stick to you? Martin (the blogger) was right- it is an exhausting and incredibly worthwhile endeavor. I encourage you to try it- and then tell me what you found. It's none of my business, of course, but aren't you just a little turned on by the prospect of baring your soul to me?