What I learnt about being self-conscious.
Updated: Feb 15
Consciousness, at its simplest, is “sentience or awareness of internal or external existence”. Despite centuries of analyses, definitions, explanations and debates by philosophers and scientists, consciousness remains puzzling and controversial being “at once the most familiar and most mysterious aspect of our lives”.
Perhaps the only widely agreed notion about the topic is the intuition that it exists. I define self-consciousness as being aware of all your actions, thoughts and deeds. This is a good thing, the issue becomes when it affects your day to day interactions, and you cannot function properly. Self -consciousness can hinder you from reaching your full potential. Sometimes it is just better to let things be than to try and control them. When you are too self-conscious, you may sometimes limit yourself.
Here is what I learnt about being self-conscious. I have always been self-conscious, especially after a modelling career where I was judged for everything. As a model, you are scrutinized, and you are always judged. It may be weird to say, but a lot of models are self-conscious. Actually, that said a lot of people in entertainment, in general, are very self-conscious about themselves. These people stand in front of cameras, walk runways and run companies, but some are more self-conscious than they appear.
Now let’s go back in time. I do not think most babies or children, or anyone is born self-conscious. Self-consciousness is something we develop due to things that have happened to us either in childhood or in early adulthood. As a child, I was very open out there, and I wasn’t shy at all. As one grows older and experiences life, I withdrew into myself. I can’t really pinpoint what age this happened, but I remember all of a sudden I grew timid.
Due to the fact that I was reticent, I was highly aware of how people behaved, and I swear that I could almost read their minds. As I became more observant of behaviour, I noticed people that were not genuine or authentic yet a lot of people like them.
Though I was self-conscious, sometimes people miss took my shyness for weakness. I was one of those women that was easy-going and would never argue or get into a confrontation.
So most of the time, I would let things pass even if they annoyed me. I am perplexed at how humans sometimes do not appreciate kindness. A lot of times, they see kindness as a weakness. Being so self-conscious, you tend to shy away rather than face confrontation or tell someone the truth about themselves. My self-consciousness crossed over into my job as a model. I was not the one to kiss the photographers ass or wine and dine with clients. I would do my job and go home; those that hung around with the photographers and the clients always seem to get more work.
I guess it’s the same in every type of industry the extroverts seem to network better and get more opportunity introverts, get stepped over.
When you’re self-conscious, sometimes you overblow the situation in your mind. You think you’re not good enough, not beautiful enough to face the world. Your authenticity is what shines through every day that is what the world wants to see. Being self-conscious can lead to being insecure, and being insecure can lead to you being depressed or anxious sometimes. Even though a lot of self-conscious people may be doubtful, it doesn’t always mean it’s the wrong type of insecurity.
You prevent yourself from reaching your full potential.
When you are self-conscious, you’re conscious of what people are saying about you all the time. Instead of being relaxed, you are always thinking, “what are they thinking about me, what are they saying about me”, and sometimes you fill stories up in your head. This narrative stops you from achieving your true potential because instead of you doing things at the spur of the moment without thinking you’re sometimes conscious of every action.
The thing about life is we have to not care what other people think or say about us. When we’re busy caring about what other people think or say about us we sometimes don’t achieve the things we can because we’re so worried and crippled with anxiety.
This is my biggest lesson about being self-conscious. I had so many opportunities in life that I let go because I was just self-conscious about what people would think, what people would say or what the outcome would be. I should’ve just dived in and jumped in and enjoyed the moment. When you’re self-conscious you cut yourself short because you’re conscious about every action you’re taking and the repercussion.
By being always conscious, you lose out on life and losing out on life is not what you want to be doing because, by the time you realize you’re self-conscious, it’s sometimes too late. There’s no point thinking about what will happen in the future if you haven’t even taken the chance on it so try and get to the root of the problem and once you’ve got to the heart of the issue as to why you’re self-conscious try and deal with it by seeing a therapist or perhaps reading self-help books. One thing you definitely do not want to be doing is missing out on opportunities in life.
People are trying to take advantage of you and bully you.
If you are someone that notices that people are always trying to take advantage of you, even though you give them your all and enjoy spending time with them. This may have to do with the fact you are self-conscious or that the fact that you are just a giving person. Sometimes when we’re self-conscious, we’re always thinking about what others are going to think about us, and so even when they’re taking advantage of us, we do not react.
People not understanding you.
The fact that this happens is because you do it you’re not getting your needs met. No, people do not know what you need; because you don’t express your needs people feel like they can’t understand you and people that are self-conscious are usually judging the statement even before they say a word.
Sometimes even before you react to something, you have already formulated in your head what you think is going to happen, and this is not always true sometimes you just have to let things be. The reason people don’t sometimes understand self-conscious people is that sometimes people cannot read them. They feel that they cannot connect with them. We are all human beings, and we have a spiritual and intellectual connection, and sometimes when people cannot connect with you, they just feel like there’s something about this person that I just don’t get.
Another thing is that sometimes when people are self-conscious, they also behave in ways that are counter-intuitive. This is not because they don’t like the people they associate with it’s just because they don’t know how to interact, “I don’t want to be judged by them” and this can cause a lot of misunderstanding and miscommunication with people.
People not appreciating you
Self-conscious people sometimes give so much, without getting equal back, they feel sometimes people don’t appreciate them. It’s not that they don’t appreciate it, but they take it for granted. It goes back to what I mentioned earlier if people don’t know your needs they can’t really help you. You’re so self-conscious, you’re never expressing your true authentic self and your full original identity.
Being taken for granted
Being self-conscious obviously is not easy. You are always thinking about yourself and thinking about what other people may be thinking about you. What you create is a wall around yourself because you’re so self-conscious of your every action. Sometimes people may take you for granted and play on your very needs.