Why do people so often act socially inhibited and stilted at the beginning of the night in the club?
It’s because they’re afraid of two things: success and failure.
If they allow themselves to feel all of the excitement and/or nervousness that they feel in the moment, they may be ridiculed.
On the other hand, if they allow themselves to feel their own excitement and/or nervousness, they may discover a massive energy that propels them into an ecstatic state. Then what will they do with all this attention? If they attract attention to themselves, they have a bigger risk of looking weird or looking cool.
Looking weird is scary because no one wants to NOT be accepted for who they are. Also, they don’t want to have to put in the energy to change, if they aren’t who they thought they were. They don’t want to let themselves down for not being as cool as their ego wants to think that they are.
Looking cool is scary because then after gaining attention they might lose it all and fail even harder by screwing it up somehow.
Did you know that your brain is thinking all of this and way more every time you go into an unfamiliar social gathering?
It all comes down to responsibility and fear of discovering that we are imperfect.
Most people do not want more responsibility. They are unwilling to take leadership, accepting and owning the consequences of their actions. Small, socially acceptable actions are “safe” because then they can take small responsibility. They don’t have to face possible ridicule or more attention than they’re used to having.
What happens if you start to do what you want though? To really be excited and talk as much as you want and allow your life energy to permeate your being and influence those around you?
Well, first of all, in order to do this, you must be open. You must be honest about the way that you are feeling in general. Whatever your emotions are, you’ve got to stop resisting them and whether or not you like them, you must accept them. Otherwise, people will see right through you.
Most people aren’t skilled enough to lie about their emotions for more than a few seconds. It takes too damn much energy.
What do I mean by this? What does it mean to “lie” about your emotions?
It means that you know you feel a certain way, but you are unwilling to accept that feeling. You do not acknowledge that feeling. You resist it.
However, as the Taoists say, “What you resist, persists.”
Proportionately to how much you are resisting an emotion, you will attract that energy. People hate to be lied to, and people can see right through your bullshit. YOU are the only one who is choosing to accept your own lies.
Other people will rarely accept you when you are lying to them, and only the people who are attempting to believe the same lies as you will be your truest friends. But these relationships are unstable since they are based on lies. Relationships founded on shared TRUTHS will last much longer.
In some rare cases, someone may feel sorry for you and try to help you because they see the truth about you even when you don’t. They believe that you are a good person who is confused. That kind of person is rare and is taking a huge risk to be your friend since most people will push others away when their beliefs are fucked with. It is possible that your belief in your own lies may be so strong that you may end up pushing away the person who is trying to help you.
People of about the same self-esteem level will feel the most comfortable with each other. How honest you are in every area of your life is often a good reflection of your self-esteem.
So what do you do with all this information? Can it even possibly apply to you?
Even the most “honest” among us can stand to be more honest about our deepest beliefs, our habits, our loves and hates. Have we ever even taken an explicit look at what those are?
I hope so.
The truth really will set you free.
But first you have to realize that you’re trapped. You have to be humble enough to examine your beliefs and courageous enough to feel your emotions.
When you know who you are, you accept who you are, you take responsibility for who you are, you are assertive about who you are and what you stand for, what you purpose is, and you live with integrity, this is when you are free.
It takes courage to live free.
And all of it takes practice.
And enjoy the process. You’re going to be doing this for the rest of your life.