What is the link among job, salary, and fear of the void?
Let’s see it together.
In a 1960 study, US psychologists Eleanor J. Gibson and Richard D. Walk wanted to gather information about infants’ perception of emptiness.
To achieve their goal, they used the visual cliff (see the picture), a tool designed to give the infant the perception of the void.
The experiment involved 36 children, aged 6 to 14 months.
Each of them was placed in the middle of the table; on the opposite side, their mother encouraged them to join her after crossing it.
What were their reactions?
Some of the children cried because they could not hug their mothers without crossing the chasm, many slipped away quickly and visibly frightened, and others tried to leave the virtual cliff by falling; all showed fear of the void.
Yes, the fear of the void catches us when children and it does not leave us as adults, when we have to face different forms of it; for example, when we are for some reason unemployed and we have to, in addition to providing for ourselves and our loved ones, face the void of identity that strikes people who are without a job.
How do we face this kind of situation?
For example, experienced mountaineers, not immune to fear of the void, face danger confident in their preparation: having gained sufficient experience and having mastered specific techniques over time gives them the sense of control that allows them to survive and live emotionally satisfying experiences.
But the choice that most of us make is very different:
What to do then?
Well, fall into the void or change direction: invest in ourselves, without delegating the solution of our problems to others.
Do you see different solutions?