We Need To Rethink Embarrassment So We Don’t Limit Ourselves

As we develop and grow, there are instances where we need to take risks and step out of our comfort zone. Sometimes, we’re held back and inhibited by fears that in turn limit those development and growth efforts. But if we hold back in the face of fear, we’re holding back from both giving and achieving our best.

When it comes to fear, in essence, its most basic driver is that we always want to make sure we don’t take any steps backward in our path of development and progress, a path which can vary from person to person. Our natural tendency is to be afraid of setbacks. We fear for our safety, which can mean our physical, financial, or emotional states, among others.

With regard to Physical fears, we try to keep an eye out for and avoid all situations that pose harm or potentially endanger us or our friends, confidants, or acquaintances.  The physical is much harder to tame as most oftentimes it might be out of our control. Some consequences in those instances can seem relatively small in nature, causing injury or impediments, while the range continues all the way out to the worst of results.  The fear in certain situations can be rooted, then stoked, in the belief that the worst case scenario will play out and that the end result can be life-ending. That’s it. Game Over.

It is a fear that can physically defeat us.

“..if we hold back in the face of fear, we’re holding back from both giving and achieving our best.”

Financial fears are another set of fears that hold us back.  As with anything else in our lives, when it comes to our financials we should prepare as best as possible to alleviate the downside risks, at the very least. In this case, the same goes for our approach–we should make sure, with diligent insight and analysis, that we are doing our best to proceed forward in a better state than in which we currently stand. In some instances, as we saw in the Great Recession, people can lose everything and therefore have to downsize their lives or, for those who lost their nest egg, keep working past their retirement age. In the worst scenarios, some people lost everything, becoming homeless.

It is yet another fear that can physically defeat us as the possibility always exists–since we tend to imagine the worst–that we will get to the point of physical survival.

Emotional fears take perceived aim at our confidence, our ego, and our emotional state.  When there are moments that might threaten said confidence and ego, whether perceived or actual, it is as crippling as any other type of fear.  These are oftentimes even more paralyzing than many other types of fear or at least they seem so since we encounter them more often and sometimes on a daily basis.

Although this is a fear that can physically freeze us and sometimes take away our breath, this is a fear that we can suppress through work, focus, and practice internally.

“No one should ever be made to feel embarrassed. In the grand scheme of life, it is a waste of time.”

For example, under the Emotional fears set exists one of the biggest fears that people deal with on a regular basis–embarrassment. If you think about it, how many times have most of us conceded our functioning, wherewithal, and focus temporarily to paralysis as we became and felt embarrassed. It’s self-psychological torment. Some might feel internally-charged embarrassment while other situations might be externally-based embarrassments. The internal is us fighting our confidence into defeat before anything has even happened externally which would have triggered those feelings, leading us to become our own worst enemies yet again. The externally-based embarrassments, for example, are those instances in which someone is actually mocking something you have done, or saying something or acting in a fashion which makes you feel inferior, whether they’re doing it consciously or subconsciously. (Sometimes it’s not so obvious to people as to what they are doing or what the results of their actions might be.)

No one should ever be made to feel embarrassed. In the grand scheme of life, it is a waste of time.

Life is about making the right connections to live the best life that you can.  In order to achieve the best in life, we should surround ourselves with the best in life—the best resources, the best environment, and the best people. When we talk about the “best people” in this case we are talking about those with integrity who provide support and show respect.  We should see life as the process of collecting such great people and experiences along the way.

Those who seek to embarrass, or would allow you to feel embarrassment, are the opposite of the desired set of those associations you need. These “antagonists” tend to be insecure people who live for themselves and, oftentimes, when you think about it, can provide you with nothing—no value at all.

Those best people that you should seek out–having the right integrity and respect–will respect your effort, opinion, and presence.  Their actions, whether obvious or subtle, deliberate or unplanned, will reflect at the very least a respect of your worth.

“Life is not about taking value from those around us, but instead culling, learning, and receiving value…”

So whenever someone might make you feel embarrassment, think about what it is they are providing to you. Or that which they are not providing you.

Keeping in mind the worth that that person has now demonstrated they do not provide should make you take less stock in what they convey to you, and should allow you to continue as you were–delivering your best self, value, and worth.

Life is not about taking value from those around us, but instead culling, learning, and receiving value that is provided or demonstrated. Those who aim to embarrass only seek to diminish value, and are not committed to the communal growth and conveyance of value, so steer clear of letting them sap your energy, which would in turn diminish your confidence and affect your performance going forward.

None of this is meant to attack those who would initiate the embarrassment or allow it to happen. Everyone has a right to their approach and opinions.

It is important to reconcile your work and life effort, energy, motivation, and self to those who can both appreciate, contribute to, and learn from it, because we want to step into the spotlight on our own terms and not be diminished by another’s.

So…What About You?

  • How have you avoided feeling embarrassment?
  • What have you learned from the past instances where you might have been embarrassed? Do you see the situation differently now?
  • How would you reframe those instances in your past when you felt embarrassment? What did those who made you feel that way offer you in the end?

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