Fear of Ridicule

I know a lot of people who wish they could act, write, draw, animate, or direct, but they stop themselves before they ever start. There’s even a good chance they would be good at their desired dreams, but still, they never try.

They’re afraid of looking foolish. Of failing so spectacularly that they’ll be made fun of. In other words–they’re afraid of ridicule.

It’s always a shame, in my opinion, whenever someone is ruled by crowd approval. Don’t get me wrong, we can’t ignore everyone completely, but knowing when pride trumps social approval is a fine art that few master. Pride is a source of approval–namely, approval from yourself–and it’s a powerful tool when trying to overcome the mockery of others.

People ridicule all sorts of things. People once ridiculed the telephone because it was a “silly device that served no purpose.” Sometimes people are wrong, and sometimes they lash out at things because they, themselves, are unhappy.

If you are ruled by the judgment of a crowd, you’ll go nowhere. There’s always going to be someone who jeers, even when the product you produce is wonderful.

Which is why I wish my friends wouldn’t worry about the approval of the crowd, at least not with their passion or their art. I know seeking approval can be addictive, and I know enough mockery can cut, but isn’t it sadder to have never known praise or denouncement?

I think so. But maybe that’s just me.

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