So ive been thinking about this a lot lately & I needed to get it all down on paper.What is the difference between Insecurity & Paranoia? & can these two things be connected?
Before I start, we need to know what these words actually mean. Insecurity is defined as uncertainty or anxiety about oneself, basically lacking confidence. & in IMO (in my opinion) everyone suffers with some form of insecurity.
Some signs of insecurity include:
- The need to be in control
- Lashing/picking on others to make themselves feel better
- Materialism (correlates with arrogance)
Paranoia is on the other hand, is a bit of a mouthful. Paranoia is a mental condition characterized by delusions of persecution, unwarranted jealousy, or exaggerated self-importance. Simply put, paranoia is the suspicion and mistrust of people or their actions without evidence or justification.
Symptoms of Paranoia include:
- Preoccupation with unsupported doubts about friends and associates
- groundless suspicions and beliefs that others are forming plots against them
- Perceived attacks on their reputation with quick counterattacks
- Often includes suspicions of infidelity of the spouse or partner
- Negative interpretation of harmless comments
- Reluctance to confide/open up to others
Well actually, there are tons of research supporting the direct link between paranoia and general insecurity. The belief is that over time the individual gets into a habit of interpreting events and actions as being negative, rather than positive. This can stem from the result of a bad life experience (breakup, death of loved one, etc) and then turn into a habit & just like any habit, every time that individual comes up with another negative explanation to replace the positive explanation, they are further reinforcing this behavior.
Here’s where things get interesting, General Anxiety and Depression are shown to sometimes develop into paranoia because they cause the individual to “over-estimate threat & risk”. Meaning, stress and major life changes cause people to act more paranoid, creating isolation for the individual, causing them to either become depressed or anxious and over time, this habitual behavior turns into paranoia.
Phew. Mind blown.