The pretention-trap

..”Perfectionist is striving for a world that doesn’t exist.” Nobody is perfect – though in many ways we seem to build up expectations and images of being so. If you spend a lot of time either speaking or acting in a way that you believe places you in a “higher” position than people around you, most probably you have fallen in the trap of being pretentious. The over-ambitious mum thinking that she is valued for the cookies she bakes or the business-man believing the jargon he applies when talking makes him impressive, have both fallen in the trap of being pretentious. Many of us do. Why is it so? 

There are times or periods in our lives where we believe that material possessions or particular patterns of behaviour form part of that perfectionism. Only to realise later that we are far from living the perfect life we thought we were living – rather we are caught in the pretentious acts of doing so. In many cases we pretend that what we possess, do, say and mean, even what we eat is what brings meaning to our lives. Taking a step back, we should ask ourselves on behalf of whom we do this? Is it for ourselves or is it to look good in other people’s eyes - living up to certain or someone’s ideals? 

Pretensions or being pretentious is characterized by assumptions of importance of being important, especially when undeserved. It is often visible through an exaggerated outward show that not always matches reality. If being pretentious is an over-exaggeration of own self-worthy, then one automatically expects respect, but on basis of what? Is it due to possessions – like money, nice cars, clothes, a penthouse, a sexy wife/husband? Do we need this feeling of success to be happy or do we pretend to be happy too? 

Respect is earned and one can perfectly well be pretentious without having earned the respect one automatically lays claim to. Laying claim to distinction or importance is as such more imagined than deserved, certainly in some cases. It also means taking yourself more seriously than what your efforts and actions actually can account for. If someone thinks they are better than everyone, including you, would it make them more valuable and better than you? No, not at all. Being pretentious is the same as living a lie and where, clearly, most people are not half as impressed as the pretentious person is of him - or herself. “To be full of yourself is to make a fool of yourself” Ashly Lorenzana says. We could not agree more.


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