Hidden Agenda

Hidden Agenda

A subconscious purpose that drives your actions or behavior, which is not the obvious, ordinary, expected purpose but which is geared toward performing an Ego-Reference to perfection.  You perceive this as necessary to feel safe and on your way to achieving your Hidden Goal and “Feel-good-about-self.”

Each Hidden Agenda is meant to ultimately lead to the realization of the Hidden Goal. Look at it as using an opportunity that should contribute to getting to “Feel-good-about-Self” that serves as a Substitute if your Sense of Self is missing.

For lack of getting validated by their caretaker as a real person in early childhood, some people adopt various behaviors as strategies to gain at least the substitute for this missing acknowledgment: approval. With each act or behavior, you may be reliving the past on a subconscious level. Each activity or behavior is then burdened by the purpose to prove that you can do it or be the way you parent wanted you to be. However, this purpose is unknown even to yourself.


So, to give yourself opportunities to put this strategy into action, later in life, you subconsciously keep seeking people, situations or events that offer the opportunity to be successful in those behaviors.


Even in situations that are not related to the one in your family or origin, like being with a partner or friend, you keep trying to get a different outcome to that crucial aspect that went wrong in the relationship with your caregiver. It is as if these new opportunities offer a vicarious chance of making yourself feel accepted by the person on whose approval/acceptance you are dependent in the first place.


If you are a person, who is stuck in the past like that, you may consciously be well aware that in this specific, new situation your partner or your boss isn’t your parent, but still in your mind, you experience this person as if it were your parent. The game that is at play with that person is a substitute for the same play you were playing with your parent. Only, you work like crazy to get a different outcome this time.


This isn’t going to happen though, because the energy of your activity or behavior is not geared towards that person. This person is not even truly “seen” by you, just like you weren’t seen yourself. Your focus is fully on gaining your Substitute Sense of Self.


Changing the outcome to that crucial aspect that went wrong in the relationship with her parent/caregiver in the past is what forms a person’s Hidden Goal.


Here’s an example. Imagine that, as a child or even teenager, you concluded: “If I don’t sleep well, my mother doesn’t like me.” A logical conclusion would be: “I have to sleep well so my mother accepts me or doesn’t resent me (Hidden Agenda)”. The fact that your mother doesn’t resent you leads to you “Feeling-good-about-yourself” that serves as a Substitute SoS. From now on you are trying your very best not to have difficulties sleeping. A nasty side effect of this motivation to get a good night’s sleep is, that any effort to do just that only leads to more insomnia.


A Hidden Agenda is always fear-based. It determines behavior but it is not based on a healthy motivation, which would be the ordinary content of the behavior. The actual intention is to get a (temporary) sense of acceptance, a motivation you are not even aware of.


Note that the Hidden Agenda in people who depend on a Substitute SoS for their Self-experience, is omnipresent in whatever they undertake. It is their way of filling that void inside.


Hidden Agendas are an aspect of Indirect Motivation, which is operating in the Substitute Sense of Self-Oriented System of a person with a Lack of SoS. Hidden Agendas as well as Hidden Goals are generated by Ego-References, are part of the Early Childhood Survival Strategy and are compulsive in nature.



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