T-Bomb: Why we’re all slaves to this social construct

Truth Bomb Tuesday: If you don’t think you deserve it, it’s not going to happen.

Do you deserve to be happy? Do you deserve to be wealthy? Do you deserved to be loved?

If I ask most people this question I get two things. The first is the words that tell me that they do deserve these things. “Of course Dymphna. Duh.”

The second is the body language that tells me that they don’t.

Most of us just don’t believe we ‘deserve’ to be happy.

This is a complex one. I think this stretches way back into the deep dark psyche of our collective consciousness. It’s there in our fairy-tales. It’s there in our myths.

There’s something called the ‘just world fallacy’. This is the idea that we are so committed to the belief that the world is just and fair, and that at some point there will be a great reckoning that will right every wrong – and we are so committed to this belief that we just can’t accept evidence to the contrary.

We tangle ourselves in all sorts of mental knots to protect the idea that world is fair.

But stop and look at the world. Is it a place of fariness? Of justice?

Ask the ladybug that’s just been gobbled up by a lizard. Did it deserve to be lunch?

Or ask the lizard that just got eaten by an owl. Did it deserve to be dinner?

Nature just doesn’t care about justice. Nature doesn’t care about fair.

(Humans do, and they should, and that’s what makes humans awesome.)

But the idea of ‘deservedness’ – this is just something humans invented. It’s a social construct.

Now, some social constructs are awesome (Do unto other etc.). Some are not awesome (A woman’s place is in the home.)

But social constructs are never fixed. They’re renewed by every generation.

They can be questioned. They can be changed.

And from a young age we’re raising our children in a culture of deservedness.

And this is useful. It’s good to forge the connection in a young mind between hard work and application, and reward.

It’s good to give kids a work ethic.

But this is about cause and effect. Not about deservedness. But we frame it as if it’s about deservedness.

Take Cinderella for example. She was good and she worked hard, and then a fairy godmother came along and made sure she got what she deserved.

(I have never seen it play out this way in practice.)

The trouble is that if we’re brought up in a culture of deservedness, we don’t think we’re worthy of anything nice – happiness, wealth, success – unless somebody tells us we deserve it.

And who gets to decide?

Nobody. It lives in the abstract. It’s the voice of the narrator in fairy-tales – somehow representative of society as a whole, or of God.

And so many people are just not open to the blessings that life has to offer them because they don’t believe they deserve it. Or they need to work hard and smash themselves to smithereens, so they can convince themselves that they really do deserve it.

You are worthy of what you are dreaming of. Everybody is.

Allow yourself to believe that you deserve it. Take back the power you have given to a faceless social construct and decide for yourself what you are worthy of.

You deserve all the wealth and happiness you desire.

And if anyone has a problem with that, let them take it up with me.

I’ll show them who the boss fairy-godmother is.


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