“I’m going to look stupid,”
These were the words that I would say to myself or others, when it was time to share my work. It was my own personal fear that people would not understand what I was doing, therefore I would, “look stupid” to them. In the past, this fear has taken over of me, stopping me in my tracks, which caused me to quit sharing my work.
About 10 years ago, this is exactly what happened when I decided that I wanted to share my love of poetry and spoken word. I went to a few venues in the city, where I ventured on stage during their, Open Mic Night. As I recited my poems, I became fearful at the audience and their eyes staring at me. It was petrifying!
During my performance, I was more concerned about how I looked and how people perceived me, than with giving a good performance. I wondered how I looked and what they were thinking. Eventually my fear overpowered me, and caused me to quit. I stopped pursuing my dreams, causing my fear of “looking stupid” to win over my life.
Since that time I have seen how this fear has not only stopped me, but others as well. We have become overly concerned with what people think. Our mind questions what people are thinking about. Do they think it is good or horrible? We become angry when the feedback we receive is not what we want or expect. When this happens, we sadly decide that we would rather, not share our work, than to “look stupid” in front of people.
Over the years, I have recognized these feelings are nothing, but a hinderance in life. It is a fact, we can’t stop people and their opinions. No matter how we do in life, someone will have an opinion. Not everyone will understand what we are doing or trying to do, so that will “look stupid” to them. It is up to us to stop trying to prove ourselves to everyone. We must know our purpose and goals and how to accomplish them. Once we know this, we will stop worrying about what other people think.
Remember, if we look to others for their approval, will be disappointed. And if this need for approval causes us to stop going after our purpose and dreams….I hate to say it…..we will “look stupid.”
Originally published by Charlene Bullard at Medium.com on August 9, 2017.