Today, I want you to become a child again! by which I do not mean that you can go back and eat sand or pee in your pants! no ! absolutely no!
All I want is you to forget all your prejudices, conceptions and the intro – extro bias. Forget it, become as nascent and pure as a 6-year-old kid!
Because today I want to walk you through a journey of a six-year-old girl. A journey of a girl from being a normal dreamy kid, to being a shy and a fear gripped person.
This kid was not a born introvert! At the age of 6 she only had dreams and few ambitions, typically kiddish they were, but for her they made sense. She wanted to be that girl in the school who gets on stage and recites the pledge, she wanted to be the class monitor, she wanted to be that popular girl who was surrounded by boys all the time, she wanted to be an actress once she comes to the right age, she wanted to be an astronaut as well! But, she was not aware of the hurdled path that leads to dreams and that it needs a lot of courage and confidence to walk on it!
She took her very first step towards her dreams when the teacher announced the upcoming fancy dress competition, she was the 1st one to give her name. delighted she went home that day and said “Mom! you need to dress me well this time, I am going to be on stage!”
Her mother was more excited than she was and decided to dress her daughter like an Indian princess. She arranged for a white and red saree, white jasmine jewelry and a cute little poem for her to recite on stage. All the preparations were done, and the girl kept repeating the poem in her head till the day came.
Finally, the day was here. The girl’s excitement knew no bounds, and the butterflies in her stomach danced to match the rhythm in her heart. she stepped into her class, she saw police mans, spider mans, bat mans, bunnies, teachers (kids dressed as teachers), she even saw trees, carrots, and mangoes. And that is when self-doubt slowly crawled in
“Am I rightly dressed?” she asked herself
little did she know, fancy dress competitions are not for the rightly dressed. But sure it has a stereotype. Believe me, it does! common costumes of popular people + weird makeups are necessary for you to look like you are in a fancy dress. And she was dressed as a mythological character called ” tulsi ki dassi”, people hardly knew about that!”
” why are you wearing flowers? and why did you wrap yourself in a single cloth? you look weird? who are?”
these questions, where enough to give the self-doubt a hand to come and reside in her brain and the self-doubt faced monster starting taking the place of the girl’s confidence. she was drowned in self-pity and low confidence when the teacher came in and took everyone backstage.
It was her turn now, to go on the stage and speak in front of the people who she knew, the same people who questioned her about her outfit, her little innocent classmates ! she gathered all the courage she possibly could and walked on the stage, her heartbeat was pounding so fast and so loud, she could feel it in her legs and her ears. she walked up to the mike, shivering from inside
” I am dressed as tulsi ki dassi”
was all she could say when all those familiar faces in the audience started laughing, those innocent faces, the class monitor, the most popular guy, the most favorite group of the class, following them every other child in the audience laughed. The laughs were devilish, the feeling that ran through her body can never be described. Self-doubt now successfully took over self-confidence, who resided with positivity and courage, with help of the fear that marched in with guilt and self-loathing.
The teacher asked her “do you have anything else to say?”, ” Yes I do,” she said but was not able to say another word on that stage. The teacher took her from there. Though she was no longer there, the fear and its faithful companions never went!
Even now, she gets intimidated and the beat of her heart fastens whenever she sees a popular guy or a girl, whenever she sees a leader, whenever she sees an audience, whenever she sees these influential faces, it triggers the self-doubt army to fight again.
Few things changed though, she now prefers to be a writer, she now prefers to read books rather than to speak in front of people, she now was the quite girl who is found in one corner of the class seemingly lost in her books, secretly admiring a popular girl in the school. And now, whenever some asks her whether she has anything to say, the reply is always
“tried it once, didn’t went so well ” her shrinking heart repeated!