I recently saw myself on video – painful!!!
One of the best things about being in my 50’s, (and yes, there’s more than one good thing!) is that my old self-conscious ways are falling further and further behind me. I work hard to be myself and to spontaneously express thoughts and feelings, in personal and business settings. Letting go of the old habit of multiple “pre-plays” and “re-plays” has been a relief. As I become increasingly comfortable with the woman I am, the judgment, actual or imagined, of others has lost its power and sting.
OK, so that’s what I thought until I found myself under bright lights and in front of a very imposing video camera. Near panic set in and flashbacks from freshman year speech class left all my good work dashed upon the old, killer rocks of self-doubt and insecurity. Relatively new skills of controlled breathing and stepping outside myself in a given moment failed me. I struggled through a short and awkward interview with heart pounding and sweat running down my back.
Now this was not live TV in front of millions, the stakes were not very high, and I could have as many takes as I needed, but for me it was torture. Later as I viewed the resulting 20 second clip, my downcast eyes and tight-lipped, strained smile (not a good look!) almost made me laugh – almost!
This short story doesn’t end in victory or with an inspiring quote, but with a promise to myself to ‘do better next time’; to once again, not care so much about my outsides, that what’s inside gets lost and washed out to sea. The journey continues – growth is good, even when it hurts!