Did you choose your role or did the opposite happen?

Who I am
Robert Maurer


Author and references

Do you act like a super hero or a victim? Are you that person who never bothers and always remains silent or, on the contrary, are you ambitious and always ask for more? The truth is that we all play a role, whether in relationships as a couple or in the family or even within a group of friends. The path to self-determination is very hard.

When a group is formed, everyone seeks their place within the group, trying to develop their own identity within the group. It is a process that develops by trial and error: a behavior is advanced and this is rejected or approved by the group. Based on the group's response, the person adapts or decides that this role is not right and ends up leaving the group or goes to great lengths to create a new balance.

In reality, all groups have their own homeostasis, some are positive and improve the development of its members while others are not, they are restrictive and can lead the subject into a spiral of self-destruction. Therefore it is very important that you determine whether the role you are playing at this moment in the group you are part of is a role you have chosen yourself and feel comfortable in or, conversely, a role that has imposed on you the group and does not allow you to express yourself at your best.

For example, there are families that define some members as "the black sheep", from this person nothing positive is expected, quite the opposite. Thus, mechanisms are created that push these individuals to behave in a certain way, always remember that social expectations exert a very powerful force and it is not always easy to identify their influence, even more difficult to get rid of them.

The importance of the black sheep


The interesting thing is that sometimes the people who play the role of "black sheep" are essential to keep the group together. For example, if the child causing so much trouble didn't exist, parents might consider divorce. Finally, each group is like a living organism struggling to survive and adapting as best it can to changes in the environment. For this reason it also generates negative roles which, in a certain sense, help to recreate a new balance and are useful for keeping the group together.

Obviously, there are cases in which it is worth asking whether it is appropriate to break the balance. In the example above, having two people lovingly bonded and tagging their child only serves to generate frustration and resentment. There are harmful balances which are destructive to group members and which must be changed at all costs.

This mechanism is found in couple relationships or even in groups of friends and in the workplace. Therefore, ask yourself if you feel comfortable in the groups you belong to and if they allow you to express your full potential. After all, remember that a healthy group grows as its members grow.

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