Sometimes it feels like all of our worst thoughts about ourselves are true. However, feeling negative about ourselves has nothing to do with who we actually are. This is evidenced by people who by all accounts are beautiful human beings, but who feel ugly and worthless.
What decides the matter is not the judgment of our eyes but our inner mood. This projects the atmosphere of worthlessness that we see in ourselves. We end up feeling too attached to our dignity and avoid circumstances that may end up with us looking ridiculous or vulnerable.
In the book, Praise of Folly, Erasmus states that everyone, no matter how schooled, learned and important is a fool. No one is spared, not even the author. No matter how schooled even he himself was, he is still a fool. He is prone to being superstitious, he is shy when he meets new people, his judgment is faulty, he is prone to irrational fear, and he is clumsy. The way to finding peace with ourselves isn't to convince ourselves that we are great and wonderful, but to find acceptance in our ridiculousness, realizing that by our nature we are foolish, but it's ok.
This way, when we do something we think is humiliating, it isn't news to us or anyone else. It is expected. We, like every other person on the earth, are foolish. The fear of humiliation no longer stalks us. We accept that failure is a norm and not as meaningful. We can laugh at ourselves and realize that confidence is a skill that is learned.
So, let's all act silly, dance like no one is watching, try new things, even if we risk looking foolish. Because life is hard - and the more we are willing to be vulnerable, and take things less seriously, the more we can laugh at the ridiculousness of it all together.
I write about human behavior, meditation, body awareness, and a variety of other things that pique my interest.