Why We Fear 'The BOSS'

Ever have a feeling that your boss/manager is the bane of your existence? Ever feel insecure or intimidated by them? Perhaps its not only this boss. Perhaps you’ve had several such bosses. Teachers or maybe officials of some kind have previously brought up difficult emotions within you. Here, I want to help you understand what’s really going on at a deeper level. A much deeper level.

In this article I’m going to argue that fear of authority figures (boss, manager, etc) is rooted in unresolved childhood trauma. I’ll also talk about how to resolve this issue and how to live life without the fear of those who yield some influence over our lives.

This will be particularly useful for those of us who had people around us as children who had their own issues. Those issues may have been projected onto you. However, this is not necessarily about them. It’s about what happened to you and what you came to believe about yourself as a result of being subjected to their dysfunction.

What is healing? Simply, it’s when the light has shone on an ancient trauma and the truth has been revealed to you.

Everything that happens to you in life is meaningful. The distant, dark memories of your childhood hold secrets for you. A time when you cried alone. A time when you were made to feel ashamed. In looking at them, often with some help, you reveal blocks you never knew existed.

You may have secretly suspected this. The old traumas flash into your awareness from time to time, calling out for attention. With courage, you will finally be able to look upon them. Where once you felt this was pointless, you reach the point of being open-minded enough to look back and bring a new intention to this remembering.

Your open-mindedness will come from your weariness of living with fear. You see repeating patterns that become increasingly difficult to rationalize or ignore. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

- “I’m still afraid and intimidated.

- I’m still desperately trying to impress.

- I’m always trying to avoid their judgement”.

You will come to know that they had a common denominator.

In your early years, you may well have learned a harsh lesson. The simple mistakes of an innocent child (yes, you) were not met with compassion, patience and understanding. Rather, they were perhaps met with anger, cruelty or intimidation. What happened next is important to understand, so I’ll spell it out here step by step:

1. You were indeed helpless as a child. You didn’t have the ability (either physical or psychological) to assert or protect yourself.

2. You realized that the person condemning you had power over you. Thus, you needed to find a way to continue living in their presence.

3. Because you couldn’t assert yourself, you had to take their side. You had no choice but to internalize feelings of self-loathing, guilt, and unworthiness. You had to convince yourself that your accuser was justified in their shaming tactic. They were ‘right’ about you. To think otherwise would have involved too much conflict.