Do not ever allow yourself to feel smaller or inferior to the level that you cannot give your best.
We all have seen the trick to make a line smaller.
First draw a line (red line in the picture), ask the question about how to make it smaller. Show by drawing another longer line next to it (blue line in the picture), and everyone says “Aaha” — Why did I not think about it?
But wait… think again.
Has the red line become smaller really? I mean, smaller than what it was?
It has remained the same.
Only that the relativity concept was introduced in order to “make it look” smaller.
We face similar situations in real life.
Bigger by position, by age, by experience, by height, by weight, smarter by looks, or any similar criteria depending on nationality, color, race, religion can impact many.
We come across others having any or many of the above aspects in various situations.
Most of the times, this impact results in stress, fear, nervousness, making mistakes, keeping quiet, not doing everything to one’s fullest potential, etc.
Be respectful to those who know better, who are older, have a lot of experience and seek their advice if the situation demands.
Do not ever allow yourself to feel smaller to the level that you cannot give your best.
Remember always that you are unique and your strengths backed by your experience, expertise, knowledge, hard work as well as smart work and dedication are unique.
I have seen many struggling with this. They knew better, had better ideas, but still somehow were not able to express those in situations where they were feeling smaller, but the ideas were really great and would have had much bigger and positive impact. Not sure how many ideas might have been suppressed because of such situations.
I have personally observed this particularly in business meetings or gatherings or at events where some of my talented friends got impacted and did not speak up. Also, I personally used to suffer due to this many years back until the time I was able to overcome the feelings and started giving my best.
I have followed something all along these years. May be it will be useful to you or someone you know in such situations.
There was a dialogue in a Bollywood (Hindi) film: “Aapke bade hone se main toh chhota nahi hota naa.” which can be translated as:
You being bigger does not make me smaller
So whenever by any chance you come across any such situation, remind yourself this, say it to yourself in your mind four or five times — (but remember to say this only in your mind and not loudly — no one should be hearing that) — “You being bigger does not make me smaller.”
Then gather your confidence to the fullest and dare to say or share what you wanted to.
Be polite while doing this though, take care not to come across as arrogant. Otherwise, it will have the reverse impact.
Agree? Or you may have better thoughts on how to address such situations. Feel free to share your thoughts, comments.
© 2019 Shashi Kulkarni. All rights reserved.
Do you Feel Smaller or Inferior? Don’t. was originally published in The Ascent on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.