- Someone keeps showing vulnerability and acting in trustworthy ways, but when someone mistakes their kindness for weakness, they enforce their boundaries. They end up in a world that has good friends but occasionally has a bad apple that has to be tossed.
- Someone prides themselves on being a manipulator. He ends ends up in a world that is full of manipulators and suckers, sometimes the same person. Whenever he isn’t manipulating people, he is playing the sucker to another manipulator, since only manipulative people can be successfully manipulated themselves (I’ll explain this more in a future post). He ends up in a world where you have to play or be played.
- A socially anxious person is deathly afraid of being humiliated. He always feels he is doing or saying the wrong thing. As a result, he enters every new situation hyperconscious of the impression he’s making, especially when all eyes are on him. As a result, he acts self-conscious, nervous, makes mistakes, and ends up bringing about the very result he fears: embarrassment. He ends up in the very world he’s trying to avoid, just by his excessive concern with trying to avoid it: a world where he can do nothing right and always embarrasses himself.
- A man feels like a social outcast who no one is attracted to and no one likes. As a result, he carries himself with excessively unattractive, unconfident body language, reads negative intent into any attempt someone makes to socialize with him, has a chip on his shoulder and snaps at people, and is incredibly pessimistic in his outlook, making him a black could to be around. He ends up in a world of self-fulfilling prophecy as a result.
- Another person is super-confident and expects everyone who is worth knowing will like him, and those who don’t, well that’s their problem. He has a lot of great social interactions, and when he doesn’t, he doesn’t make a big deal about it.
- A person suffering from borderline personality disorder acts super clingy and jealous and rages a lot and ends up bringing about the very abandonment she fears, by the exact same behavior she was doing to avoid it.
- A codependent, sick of having his life filled with manipulators that eventually abandon him, keeps creating his own hell by being so needy and having such poor boundaries and choosing such bad people that he keeps ending up in a world where people manipulate or abandon him.
- I discussed much of this also in my post about men who study seduction tactics. The same goes for women who live by The Rules or people whose idea of working on their love life is reading Robert Greene’s Art of Seduction. They often create a world where by taking a manipulative and superficial view of self-improvement, they end up screening for manipulative and superficial people, and create for themselves a world where everyone is out to manipulate everyone else. They then use this world they created for themselves as justification to get better at manipulating, whereas if they understood their role in creating that manipulative world the could instead opt to create a better world populated by more enriching people.
- A person may passively create a world where he is surrounded by bullies by virtue of the fact that he never enforces his boundaries when they are crossed, especially when the infraction is minor, so that he invites greater boundary infractions down the line. The reasons why this happens are very complicated, but two big factors is that the things we believe affect the way we act, the way we act affects the responses we get, and all those things affect how we interpret our interactions. If you believe bad things about yourself, you will act in negative ways that create negative responses and even if something positive happens you will interpret everything negatively anyway, and still believe and act negatively. And the exact opposite of all those steps often happens when you have positive beliefs.
World-creation can either be positive or negative, intentional or unintentional, active or passive. But before lamenting or celebrating our lot in life, it’s always important to be more self-aware and figure out the ways we are creating the various worlds we occupy.
- Who’s Pulling Your Strings?: How to Break the Cycle of Manipulation and Regain Control of Your Life by Harriet Braiker. A great book on manipulation, and it has a great description of world-creation, although it doesn’t actually use that term for it.