Although it looks a lot like a poem, the brief prose I’m sharing from author and lecturer Marianne Williamson today (below) offers us a chance to take a hard look at ourselves and our perceptions.
And maybe, it will help us to find new ways to feel more confident and secure in ourselves–to learn to shine our own lights as we encourage others to shine their own.
Our Deepest Fear
By Marianne Williamson
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
So that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We were all meant to shine, as children do.
It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
We unconsciously give other people permission to do the same
As we are liberated from our own fear,
Our presence automatically liberates others.”
What I Think
As I see it, it’s not about being “full of ourselves” or “arrogant”–it’s about being confident and secure.
I believe that self-confidence and arrogance are two very different things.
True self-confidence gives you the ability to feel good about yourself, while still genuinely encouraging others to shine their brightest and celebrating their accomplishments and general awesomeness as you celebrate your own.
Arrogance, on the other hand, is based in insecurity, an often secret fear of not being good enough (or maybe, as Williamson believes, a fear of success). In either case, that fear makes you want to push others down in order to lift yourself up–and in the long run, you might find a little bit of superficial success, but you might end up feeling so empty or unfulfilled that you can’t really enjoy it.
That’s just my take, of course.
How do you see it? Please share your thoughts and feelings in the comments section, below. I’d love to know what you think!