It’s so tempting to want to hide our insecurities. It’s pretty understandable because insecurities don’t feel good.
Our insecurities can make us feel different, or like we don’t fit in. We can feel embarrassed by them, or be afraid other people will judge us for them.
So we try to hide them. We try to hide them by telling lies and making excuses.
(I know the word lie sounds harsh, but isn’t that what we are doing when we tell a story or make an excuse?)
We tell these lies and make excuses to the people around us and even to ourselves.
If I haven’t lost you yet, keep reading, because it will turn your life around.
Did you notice I said TRY to hide them? The deeper we get into our stories in an attempt to cover up our insecurities, the more we convince ourselves that our insecurities are tucked deep away in a vault, invisible to all.
Here is the brutal truth. People see them anyway. And the more you try to hide them, the more people sense that something is going on.
Maybe people don’t know exactly what you are trying to hide, but it’s easy to smell a rat when things don’t feel right.
When we make up excuses and lies to try to hide an insecurity, people now see two things. Insecurity AND a lack of authenticity.
This is why trying to hide insecurities backfires. The people around you react to your lack of authenticity. That causes them to treat you differently. You then feel different from everyone else, and that makes you feel even more insecure.
The people around you want authenticity. They want the real story, not the concocted one. They have their own sets of insecurities , and they want to feel that they aren’t alone.
Embrace who you are. Love yourself right now. Celebrate your little quirks. You are kooky and that is a good thing!
It can be hard admitting an insecurity. So often, we build up a tough exterior that tries to portray the opposite of what we are really feeling.
Admit your insecurity to yourself first, and then venture out and tell the truth to others.
The idea of revealing an insecurity might make you feel pretty anxious. Will I look weak? Will the other person lose respect for me? Will they think I am weird?
Try saying something like this:
“I hate to admit this but….”
“I’m embarrassed to share this, but….”
There is a bonus at the end of all this. Actually three bonuses!
- When you shine a light on an insecurity and let it out in the open, it almost immediately begins to fade! Things we try to hide seem to flourish in the dark hidden crevices. Shine some light on those critters and they melt away. Even if some of the insecurity remains, the emotional charge lessens.
- People will like you more because you are being real with them. That means they can feel safe to be real with you. Everyone can let down their guard. There is a reason that posts on Medium that talk from the heart do really well. Again, others want to know that you are real, that they can trust you, and that they aren’t the only ones with insecurities.
- It won’t be nearly as bad as you think it is going to be to be honest about your insecurities. Do you know what I most often hear after I reveal an insecurity? “Oh, ok.” And then the subject changes. Really it is not a big deal!
“When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everyone will respect you.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
Lastly, your insecurities don’t define you!
You can think of them as going along for a ride (temporarily) with you. But they do not define who you are.
I applaud every effort to kick them off the ride. The first step to doing that is opening the door, so they can get out.
As always, I wish you all the best!
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Visit me at www.christinebradstreet.com
Originally published at theascent.pub