We create shells in our lives: little shelters from which we can cower from the world and protect ourselves from exposed vulnerability. Some of us create turtle shells, others just little mesh walls, but in some capacity we are all afraid of letting our true selves known.
I was listening to a psychology radio show the other evening and a turtle-shelled-caller called in seeking advice. He felt isolated from others and, subsequently, the lonelier he felt, the deeper in his turtle shell he recoiled until he felt utterly no hope of companionship with others. This is a fear that too many of us can echo. Perhaps we don’t realize it, but we are desperately afraid of having our true selves discovered. We construct protective shells, we paint them, we change them, and we suppress the deep longings of being known that tingle inside our heart of hearts. When we feel others getting close, we push them away in fear that they will discover the real us. Instinctively, we surmise that it’s better to reject others rather than be rejected by others. Sadly, we are only deceiving ourselves and making our shells even more impermeable.
What will it take for you to come out of your shell and let the world know the real you? When will you stop hiding your beauty, your quirks, and your passions and let your personality shine? I encourage you to start with baby, or turtle steps. Figure out what you love to do, and do that one thing. Engage in more conversations with strangers, for, as you do and as your brighten their day, you will discover the power of the innate charisma that you already have. Charisma and personality must be developed — so, start allowing yours to shine and grow. Step confidently out of your shell and kick it to the curb, for there is no need to hide the wonderful gifts of personality that you have been given.