I Have A Problem With Authority, Argh!

Last updated by Rosie Harlow

With all the orders my parents gave me, I thought I was armed for school, but as soon as I was at pre-school, my parents were summoned because I refused to do what the teacher told me. As I grew up, it became increasingly difficult to tell my manager where to get off, summoning my parents was no longer an option, but the intolerance to authority remained. Can we reconcile ourselves with authority, whether it is a silent or uncontrollable difficulty?

I Have A Problem With Authority, Argh!
Contents:

My passive rebellion

I say that I have trouble with authority, and you immediately think that I’m a rebel, in conflict with my parents, teachers, manager, and tell anyone who gives me an order to get lost. Think again! My problem with authority is much more twisted than that: I’m undergoing a sort of passive rebellion. My parents couldn’t stand my disobedience, and they were very strict. I quickly understood, even at school, that in order not to obey an order and still have peace of mind, you mustn’t provoke. As a result, I never openly said that I hated school, but the more I was expected to get good grades, the less effort I made.

🧠 I didn’t respect the rules, but silently and discreetly. Opposing them head on always seemed futile to me. There are orders everywhere, so I make a distinction, going from someone who accepts authority to someone who runs away from it or rebels in silence. It’s a situation that’s much more difficult to live with than it seems. Fulfillment isn’t into the bargain!

Authority: I need it, I flee from it, I hate it

We’re not all equal when it comes to authority, there are 4 types of profile. Most of the time, we easily recognize ourselves in one of these profiles, but sometimes depending on the circumstances, the context or the people, we switch from one profile to another.

1. The obedient one, for whom the boundaries are reassuring

This is the person who accepts orders without complaining because the boundaries reassure them. They like having guidelines and think that receiving orders is par for the course, especially at work. No matter with what tone of voice the orders are given, they value their superiors and are always trying to prove their legitimacy. They are able to take criticism, not least because they know how to manage their emotions, especially in professional situations.

>>> You may be interested in this article: Learn how to manage your emotions in 3 steps

2. The one who sorts whether to obey?

The one who sorts evaluates whether to obey an order. For them to accept authority, it must come from a person they trust and value or someone who is kind and empathetic. Then, they will only accept an order if they feel it’s justified. At work, if this evaluator feels his superiors aren’t up to the task or if a manager behaves authoritatively, plays the jumped-up boss and is unfair, the evaluator is likely to get angry.

This is a vision of authority that I find very healthy. It’s one of the principles of positive education. Teaching a child to obey is good, but teaching them to obey at all costs with their eyes closed, is less so. There are many unfair orders, which don’t help, so it’s good to learn how to distinguish them.

3. The one who bows over, when fear dominates

This is my profile. Particularly tormented because very often they’re plagued by a feeling of injustice they can’t express. People with this type of profile often have no idea how difficult it is for them to deal with authority. What dominates is often the fear of being fired, disliked or discredited and the difficulty to say noFaced with an order, self-censorship applies. The result is a lot of inner anger and extreme nervousness.

4. The one who refuses, the uncontrollable one

And of course, there’s the one who refuses everything, the uncontrollable one. Whatever the order, they refuse it. Here we’re faced with an excessive ego, someone who thinks they’re above everyone else, a narcissist who sincerely believes that they don’t have to take orders from anyone, probably because they never really received orders as a child. It’s impossible to work in a team with this type of person.

Can you flourish in the face of authority?

When faced with a problem of authority, it’s difficult to turn back, as this would mean changing your character or the education you received. It's complicated, sometimes even impossible. However, by working on yourself with the help of a therapist, profiles such as “the one who bows over” or “the one who refuses” can be transformed.

Asserting yourself

Practicing silent insubordination or accepting all orders with a knot in your stomach is sending the wrong signals. Nobody is in my head to know whether I accept this order against my will and in spite of all my moral principles. So what solutions can you put in place when you feel subjected to an authority that brings you out in hives? You can start by being assertive at work, so that you assert yourself with your manager in particular, but also with your colleagues. Learning how to say no is also a necessity, replacing “I’m sorry” with thank you, will help you not to constantly devalue yourself and then, if necessary, it’s not appropriate to remind your manager of the legal framework of your work (“I’d like to do it, but I’ll do it tomorrow as I’ve been working since 8am”).

Be supervised

For those who refuse all orders, it’s paradoxically in a world with very strong authority that they could flourish. In the army, the police, high-level sport or a restaurant kitchen. Here, there’s no room for discussion, the work is strict but the objectives are clear, precise and the sanctions are harsh. In this type of environment, someone who can’t stand authority can find a structure that will relieve them and give them a rest, even if from time to time, violent altercations are still possible.

😉 Finally, the only important thing is balance. Whatever your relationship with authority, you must be able, especially in the world of work, to accept the boundaries, all the while shifting them from time to time!

Editor’s note: It’s all about balance

The relationship with authority is complex and personal. The key is to find the balance, so you can flourish, be in tune with whom you really are and what your superiors expect from you. Authority defines boundaries, and when they’re clear, then you are entitled to do whatever you want within them. But for this, the boundaries must be clear and well accepted… If your relationship with authority is complicated and prevents you from flourishing in your professional life, then it’s time to contact a psychologist in order to study the reasons and to find solutions.

🤗 Understand yourself, accept yourself, be happy... Let’s do it here and now!

#BornToBeMe

Be sure to check out these articles too:

Article presented by Rosie Harlow

Writing has always been a form of therapy for me. For as long as I can remember, I have always used paper as a punching bag. Get to know me, I am Rosie Harlow.

Read our latest articles here:

10 Signs Of A Bad Friendship - These Should Alarm You!

Our instincts are often renowned for always being right, and we certainly know the signs of a bad relationship when we see them. Although, that being said, we do at times end up ignoring our gut feelings and only realize how toxic they are when it's too late. Just like in relationships, there are red flags we can't ignore in our friendship group if we want our rapport to remain healthy. Read on to discover the 10 signs that you need to update your girl group and ditch certain members of it.

The Ultimate Survival Guide To Dealing With A Break-Up

Getting over an ex isn’t always an easy process because we all mend, move on and heal differently. Whilst for some of us, a quick hookup and a few weeks of reflection is enough, others take much longer to move forward and on to new things. Whatever method you choose when it comes to forgetting about your past love experiences, know that it takes a lot of strength of character. The post breakup period can make us feel lonely and lost, but believe us when we say there is light at the end of the tunnel. Discover the motions people go through, and the steps involved to being able to recover for heartbreak.

10 Passive-Aggressive Examples To Help You Recognize This Behavior

We all have sarcastic and manipulative tendencies that emerge when we feel stressed or even under pressure. Although, we can't particularly be proud of this kind of behavior, we all exhibit it. These negative behaviors are usually noticeable very quickly, that is, except in passive-aggressive people who bury their emotions. These particular individuals act in the shadows but are still very harmful and toxic, especially if you are friends with or even dating one. Discover our 10 examples that will help you to spot passive-aggressive behavior, and reveal what you can do when you are confronted with it.

How To Break Up With Someone You Live With - 5 Tips To Go About It

Have you decided to end your relationship, yet you want to do it in the kindest way possible? If you are in this situation, you must go about it in the right way, regardless of what's gone on or who is to blame. Breakups can be brutal, and you don't want to inflict pain and suffering on your partner, right? But you can't exactly let yourself be unhappy for much longer either, and need to move out. Letting someone down gently is a tough balance to enact, and it involves asking yourself the right questions to make the separation as painless as possible. If you want to be able to walk away from your partner in the smoothest possible way, you're in the right place.

The Power Of Hugs, It's Time To Share The Love

Individualism is great, but deep down we all have needs and do enjoy connecting and exchanging with other people. Humans all need a little affection and comfort at some point in their lives, no matter how strong they claim to be. That's right, at certain points in our lives, we all need to feel reassured, cared for and love, and hugging does just that! The question is why is this seemingly simple gesture so important in lifting our spirits and making us feel better?

10 Morning Routine Ideas For Productivity, Plus They Take Less Than 5 Minutes

At 6:55 a.m., the dreaded alarm clock violently rings out. By 6:56 a.m., you're no doubt already stressed at the thought of having to get up, get ready and rushing around. Yet with a little motivation and 5 minutes to spare, you can transform this stressful morning ritual into a moment of relaxation. A productive day starts in the morning and motivates us to go out and be successful. Starting out right will set you up for a great rest of the day and will remodel your attitude into a winning one! Take a deep breath and put the normal stress to the back of your mind because we're about to enter a peaceful space.

Early Signs Of A Toxic Relationship, And Tips On How To Escape

It's often tough for those in abusive relationships to face the music and admit that things aren't healthy. Controlling behaviors span from constant criticism, which makes victims feel drained, to domestic abuse. If any of these situations ring true to you, then it’s probably about time you gave your relationship some thought and started thinking about leaving the relationship and moving on. We're here to discuss what qualifies a relationship as toxic and what we need to do to put an end to the abuse. After all, it's time you made your future brighter and started focusing on your wellbeing.

These Are The 10 Most Common Reasons People Divorce

Love is only said to last 3 years, which probably explains why only 50% of marriages get past the 9-year mark. Learning this made me instantly realize that I needed to start making more of an effort with my partner if I didn't want to part of this sad statistic. Relationships are tough, what with the daily grind, the invasive in-laws and the temptation to go looking for affection and attention elsewhere. Without further ado, discover the 10 most common reasons for divorce.

Why Do I Constantly Need To Be In Control?

Wanting things to go well is perfectly normal, but sometimes this need for perfection can represent a huge barrier in our lives. Do you have trouble not giving in to the temptation of micromanaging everything in your life? Does leaving things to chance make you nervous and put you on edge? Where does your need to control everything come from? Letting go and becoming more easygoing will change everything for you and help you start living your best life. Discover how to let loose and free yourself from this need.

So What If I Hate Working?

I always thought that I was surrounded by people who loved their jobs, that is until I started openly talking about how much I hate working. Let’s get one thing straight, I’ve never liked my job, but have only recently built up the courage to talk about it. That's right, I used to hide my despair under a huge smile in an effort to convince myself I was overreacting, plus I was also afraid of other people judging me. In fact, daring to share my thoughts got me asking if I was the problem; was I the black sheep? Or, were my reasons for this bold statement justified? It's time to see if are all secretly on the same wavelength.

Wengood's favorite tunes 🎵

How to detect a narcissist


"Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." 

- Oscar Wilde


How to soothe an anxiety attack