As some of you may know, in addition to yoga and wellness, I am also an actor. Consistently auditioning and humbly practicing rejection in the large doses it often presents itself in, it often requires me to find balance in the rest of my life which is why I have such a strong love for the practice of yoga.
Yesterday, I left an “audition” feeling anything but balanced. My mind was all over the place. I felt the cause was thought-provoking enough to share.
I received an “audition” from my representation that wasn’t exactly an audition. It was worded as “a competition.” I would receive $50 for participating and had the opportunity to win $1,000. The entire experience seemed rather off; Auditions don’t pay and a competition? In the least, I was intrigued but hesitant.
I arrived to the “audition” and was taken down a set of stairs into a basement with winding hallways, empty boxes of product and fluorescent lights. I was led to a room where a woman introduced herself and a man was sitting down with a computer and equipment I didn’t recognize. This was a lie detector.
Immediately, my mind went to how intimidating it would be for someone who’s life depended on the data this machine produced; how the body might react just by already being perceived as guilty or if someone were desperate to prove their innocence. Needless to say, I felt uncomfortable attached to a machine attempting to penetrate my subconscious as it has to so many others in less fortunate circumstances.
I was given two drinks to taste and was told if I said “Yes” to the question of, “is product A better than product B” and was telling the truth (according to the machine), I would win $1,000.
I came to the experience blind. I had done no research on which brand was the asking company’s nor had I done any research on how one might pass a lie detector test.
I was under the impression it was an EXPECTATION that I answer the question “honestly.” I believed product A was this company’s product and I didn’t want to disappoint by revealing I didn’t like it.
These are two important factors: expectations and people pleasing.
Product A tasted like flat seltzer water. Product B tasted like a tart and fruity seltzer water. Believing that Product A was theirs, I convinced myself it was the better product by justifying to myself it was more closely to what I would expect a seltzer water to taste like rather than if I felt it was a better product. Product A, might I add did NOT taste good. That wasn’t the question NOR the expectation. So I convinced myself of something I could believe and justify in order to reach 1) expectations and 2) To please those around me.
Turns out, I passed and won $1,000! I also discovered the poorly-tasting product I was praising was NOT the product of the company’s. Oops! But... thanks?
Previously, I have studied the psychology of child development and that a child is more likely to go to college if it is an undeniable expectation of their parents rather than coming to the decision on their own. So that justifies the expectation part to an extent. But how far do expectations go? With whom? Is it a motive? A relationship? Or simply a habit of surrendering your own opinion when confronted with an opposing one? Or one that may cause feelings of unpleasantness or dislike from others?
How do you view your relationships and work environments objectively? Do you feel like these factors play into your performance? Have you ever considered it before and do you believe the affects are positive or negative on you?
Would love to hear your answers below!