Creative Leadership

You’re Not as Embarrassing as You Think

The Wall Street Journal reports that maybe we worry too much about what others think.  As Richard Wiseman writes:  “A Cornell study of the psychology of embarrassment—which I like to think of as the Barry Manilow T-shirt experiment—suggests as much. Subjects were required to enter a room wearing a T-shirt featuring a large picture of Mr. Manilow, the crooner whose hits may induce as much wincing as swooning. Although 50% of the T-shirted subjects were self-conscious about what they were wearing, only 20% of the people in the room even noticed it. This experiment yielded the reassuring result that individuals are more aware of their gaffes—from flubbing an answer at an interview to having a bad hair day—than most of the people observing or talking to them.”

In other words, we are far more critical about our public flubs than we should be.  In fact, think of what we could accomplish if we just let go of our insecurities and fear of embarrassment.

So go out there and have a little fun, accomplish something amazing, and worry less about what other people think….

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  1. That is actually my goal for 2010.  I gave up my political blog and decided to write what I know.  A little intimidating when it is a blog about your life.  But you know what.  I am having fun and itis  much easier writing what I know than giving my opinion about what other people say!


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