When we are children we play with unbridled enthusiasm. We explore, we ask questions, and we act silly as hell never pausing to worry how we appear to others. At what age do we start caring what other people think? Is there something ingrained in our developing consciousness that makes us fear the judgment of others?
I don’t remember the first time I felt this fear but I know it started sometime around middle school and followed me around like a dark cloud through my high school and college years. I always had my close cherished friends who loved the “real” me. The silly as hell howling at the moon me, but in general I have always been shy. I would hide away in my little shell afraid people would not like what they see if I came out. I look back and regret I spent so much of my younger years afraid to be myself.
I would love to say I have completely shed this shell of fear, that I’ve left bits of it scattered about my feet. The truth is I don’t know if I will ever completely lose the fear of being judged. I often hear older woman say they have “given up giving a shit!”I adore this attitude and strive as much as I can to emulate it.
Try not to take yourself too seriously. We routinely trick ourselves into thinking we need to act a certain way to get by in this world. We forget how to joke and make fun of ourselves. We lose the ability to admit our mistakes and learn from them because we are so terrified we will look less than perfect. In this fear we feign confidence and seep indignation when we are challenged. If we can’t admit we are wrong we can never grow.
It is ok to be silly, it is ok to let our hair down and howl and shriek and laugh. If you fear you are surrounded by people who will judge you perhaps you should go crazy. Let your inner wolf out and let any judgmental sheep scatter away from your wild glory. You will find that those who stay by you will sing the same song as you. How else can we find our pack if we don’t sing the song of our souls?