Accepting The Risk of Embarrassment

Accepting The Risk of Embarrassment

I recently finished Auston Kleon's Show Your Work and this quote he used stuck with me.

"Compulsive avoidance of embarrassment is a form of suicide." - Colin Marshall

It can feel like embarrassment is the worst pain one could bear. You wish you could cease to exist until it's all over. But you can be so scarred by past embarrassment that you limit your potential.

I've let my fears drive me to avoid potentially embarrassing situations and stay within my comfort zone. But it's hard to grow when you force yourself to stay within a limited space you know to be safe. The world is uncertain and filled with potential for things to go awry but nothing is guaranteed to work out.

To avoid embarrassment is to avoid displaying your true self to the world for fear of judgement. It's to hide behind a mask that shields you but also never lets anyone know who you really are. It's living but a faint impression of it.

As a creative, you have to place yourself in positions where embarrassment is an even bigger risk. You have to display your true self in your work and then place it on stage to await the judgement of others. It's a calculated risk you must take to face your fears in hopes of achieving your goals. It's painful and nerve-wracking but it's the only way to truly live.