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A Detailed Breakdown of the 6 Types of Facepalmed Moments We All Have Experienced

A Detailed Breakdown of the 6 Types of Facepalmed Moments We All Have Experienced

Imagine you’ve been chosen for a part in your local amateur theatre production of “The Picture of Dorian Gray”.

Weeks of rehearsals leave you ready to take to the stage. On opening night, the curtain rises as you wait eagerly in the wings for your moment to walk into the spotlight.

As you step purposely towards the center of the stage, disaster strikes… You’ve miscalculated the height of the stage riser, and in the space of a second, you’ve fallen flat on your face – right in front of the audience!

Embarrassment is one word for it. Humiliation is another.

We can’t avoid an embarrassing moment, so deal with it.

Embarrassing situations can actually change how we behave in the years ahead.

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As an example, if you were an inferior sports player at school, you’ve probably learned to avoid competitive sports as an adult. This would be especially true if your school ‘friends’ had mocked your sporting ability. (Kids can be cruel!)

Clearly, embarrassment can be a major factor in how we conduct and live our lives.

Given that you’ll always encounter embarrassing situations, it makes complete sense to learn how to cope with these situations. The first step in doing this, is to understand the different types of embarrassment that we all come across in our day-to-day lives.

Yes, there really are 6 different types of embarrassment.

You’ve probably not given embarrassment a lot of thought. In fact, you’ve probably tried to forget all about it!

However, if you’re going to deal with embarrassment, then it’s important to understand the different types of it.

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1. When your privacy is violated.

Having your privacy violated can be a terrible thing. For example, imagine if your personal photos were stolen by hackers and posted publicly for all to see. Your reputation could be tarnished, and you may lose face among your friends and family.

2. When you don’t know something.

I’m sure you wouldn’t be tempted to do this, but… Many people exaggerate their skills, knowledge and experience on their resume. When writing, they may be comfortable with ‘spinning’ their words. However, a tough interview can quickly reveal their lies and deception. Shame, guilt and embarrassment are all easy to spot on the human face.

3. When you’re being criticized.

Do you remember the first time you asked someone out on a date? No doubt, you spent weeks building up the courage to speak to the person of your dreams. When the perfect time arrived, you pushed yourself beyond all limits and asked your crush if they’d like to go out with you. Unfortunately for you… they appeared to smirk, before saying: “No thanks!” A devastatingly embarrassing situation for you. (And one that you may not have ever fully recovered from.)

4. When you do something awkward.

I used to work in a trendy office that overlooked the River Thames in London. We were lucky enough to have our own patio right down to the water’s edge. It was paradise. However… one day my manager was talking on his cell phone while strolling around the patio. Caught up in his phone conversation, he walked too close to the patio edge. I remember looking across at him, right at the moment he fell into the river! His phone was lost, and he was completely soaked. I’m not sure that he ever managed to live that moment down.

5. When your image is not what you want.

Have you noticed how everyone seems to be obsessed with aging? By this, I’m referring to our futile attempts to hold back the hands of time. It seems to start with teenage girls. In most cases, they seem to never want to grow up. Post-teenage years, and you’ve reached the stage where virtually everyone is trying to stay young forever. I won’t name names, but I’ve several male friends who due to being embarrassed about their hair going gray – now regularly dye their hair. Of course, there are much more extreme actions than this. Think of the growing popularity of plastic surgery.

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6. When you don’t feel like fitting in.

I’m sure you’ve heard of culture shock.[1] This happens to the majority of people who move to live abroad. While the first few weeks may be okay. After that, they start to find themselves caught up in frustrating and embarrassing situations caused by the new culture they’ve immersed themselves in. As an example. some cultures require women to cover themselves at the beach. Other countries are much more relaxed, with some even allowing nudity.

If we all feel embarrassed anyway, why not turn it to our advantage?

Have you considered that embarrassment could be a positive thing?

It’s true. With the right reactions on your part, embarrassing situations can definitely be turned to your advantage.

Let’s look now at a few ways that you can do this.

Downplay the Moment

Do you remember President Obama attempting to enter the White House (while being filmed by dozens of rolling cameras) only to find himself locked out of his usual entrance. For sure, a highly embarrassing situation for him. However, he didn’t let the situation phase him. Instead, he coolly walked a few meters to the next doorway – which was unlocked. You can use this trick too. Rather than turning an embarrassing situation into something even worse. Play it cool.

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Change the Channel

You’ve accidentally offended one of your friends by making an inappropriate joke. What can you do to fix this? Well, an apology is certainly a good idea in this case. However, it’s important to move the situation on as quickly as possible. You can do this, by changing the conversation to something completely different. Just make sure that it’s something that your friend is genuinely interested in.

Stop Replaying the Embarrassment

If only I hadn’t done that. If only I hadn’t said that. If only, if only, if only… Stop! By replaying embarrassing situations, you’ll drive yourself crazy. Mistakes happen, but that doesn’t mean we need to torture ourselves by endless repeating them in our minds. Instead, always try to focus on the now, or on a positive goal. The other trick to stop your mind replaying embarrassing moments, is to keep your mind busy with productive thoughts.

Laugh at Yourself

A 2011 study[2] found that having the ability to laugh at yourself was a sign of an optimistic personality. It makes sense, as pessimistic people seldom seem to laugh at themselves (they’re too busy being miserable!). When it comes to handling embarrassing situations like tripping in public, then being able to laugh at yourself will serve you well. Not only will others respond positively to your behavior – but you’ll also feel much less embarrassed.

Just Go Ahead and Blush

Embarrassment has physical side effects such as blushing. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If you blush when you realize you’ve made a mistake, others will immediately see that you’re a warm-hearted and emotional person. These are positive traits, that will endear people to you. For example, imagine that you’ve accidentally short-changed a cashier at a local store. You were on your way out of the store, when you heard them say… “Excuse me, but you haven’t paid the right amount.” If you look embarrassed, and you blush strongly, then the cashier will know immediately that you’ve made an honest mistake.

So, now you know the different types of embarrassment, and how best to deal with them.

Use this knowledge, and start making your life happier and more successful.

Reference

More by this author

Craig J Todd

UK Writer who loves to use the power of words to inspire and motivate.

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Published on October 30, 2020

11 Essential Philosophy Books That Will Open Your Mind

11 Essential Philosophy Books That Will Open Your Mind

There are numerous ways to build your mindset, but none are as profound as reading philosophy books. Through these books, some of the greatest minds around ask questions and delve deep into thought.

While there isn’t always a clear and distinct answer to the many questions of philosophy, the entire field is a gateway to a higher sense of self. It gets you to think about all manner of things.

Below, we cover some of the essential philosophy books that are best for those who are just starting or looking to expand their mind.

How To Choose a Good Philosophy Book

Before getting to this list, we’ve researched ideal philosophy books to help you expand your mind.

We’ve found that the best philosophy books excel in the following criteria:

  • Complexity – Philosophy isn’t a subject that you can’t dive into immediately and understand everything. The books that we selected are great for people making the first leap.
  • Viewpoint – With philosophy, in particular, the author’s views are more important than in your standard book. We want to ensure the viewpoints and thoughts being discussed still hold up to this day.
  • Open-mindedness – Philosophy is all about asking perplexing questions and unraveling the answer. You might not reach a conclusion in the end, but these books are designed to get you to think.
  • Culture – The last criterion is culture. A lot of these books come from early philosophers from centuries ago or possibly from recent years. These philosophy books should paint a picture of the culture.

1. Meditations

    One that you’ll find on many of these types of lists is Meditations and for good reason. It’s the only document of its kind to ever be made. The book focuses on the private thoughts of the world’s most powerful man who advises himself revolving around making good on his responsibilities and the obligations of his position.

    We know enough about Marcus Aurelius to know that he was trained in stoic philosophy and practiced every night on a series of spirituality exercises. These exercises were designed to make him humble, patient, empathetic, generous, and strong in the face of whatever problem he had to face off. And he faced plenty of problems since he was basically the emperor of roughly a third of the planet.

    All of that is poured into this book, and you are bound to remember a line or more that will be applicable in your life. It’s a philosophy book staple.

    Buy Meditations here.

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    2. Letters From a Stoic

      Similar to Marcus Aurelius, Seneca was another powerful man in Rome. He was a brilliant writer at the time and was the kind of guy to give great advice to his most trusted friends. Fortunately, much of his advice comes in letters, and those letters happen to be in this book. The letters themselves provided advice on dealing with grief, wealth, poverty, success, failure, education, and more.

      While Seneca was a stoic, he has a more practical approach and has borrowed from other schools of thought for his advice. As he said when he was alive, “I don’t care about the author if the line is good.” Similar to Meditations, there are several brilliant lines and advice that are still relevant to this day.

      Buy “Letters From a Stoic” here.

      3. Nicomachean Ethics

        Aristotle was a famous Greek philosopher at the time with profound knowledge. He’s named after a form of logic as well called Aristotelian logic. Through this book, Aristotle writes about the root of all Aristotelian ethics. In other words, this book contains the moral ideas that form a base for pretty much all of western civilization.

        Buy “Nicomachean Ethics” here.

        4. Beyond Good & Evil

          Friedrich Nietzsche played a big role in the philosophical world. He was one of the leading philosophers of the existential movement, and it all came through this particular book. He is a brilliant mind. However, the issue with a lot of his work is that it’s all written in German.

          Fortunately, this book is one of the slightly more accessible ones since it’s translated. Within the book, he breaks down the paradoxes of conventional understandings of morality. By doing this, he sets the stage for a lot of the 20th-century thought process that followed.

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          Buy “Beyond Good & Evil” here.

          5. Meditations on First Philosophy

            In Meditations on First Philosophy, René Descartes breaks his book down into six meditations. The book takes a journalistic style that is structured much like a six-day course of meditation. On day one, he gives instructions on discarding all belief in things that are not guaranteed. After that, he tries to establish what can be known for sure. Similar to Meditations, this is a staple and influential philosophical text that you can pick up.

            Buy “Meditations on First Philosophy” here.

            6. Ethics

              Written by Benedict de Spinoza, this came at a time during the Age of Enlightenment. Enlightenment was a movement that dominated the world of ideas in Europe during the 17th and 18th centuries and with that, many schools of thought emerged and were presented through books.

              Out of the many influential philosophy books published back then, Ethics dominated during this period as it discussed the basis of rationalism. Even though we’ve developed further beyond that, Ethics can introduce new ways of thinking from this particular school of thought.

              Buy “Ethics” here.

              7. Critique of Pure Reason

                Immanuel Kant is another great philosopher who brought together two of history’s biggest opposing schools of thought into a single book. Those schools being rational thought and empirical experiential knowledge—knowledge gained through experience.

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                In Critique of Pure Reason, Kant explores human reason and then works to establish its illusions and get down to core constituents. Overall, you can learn more about human behavior and thought processes and thus, open your mind more to how you think and process everything around you.

                Buy “Critique of Pure Reason” here.

                8. On the Genealogy of Morals

                  Another piece of work from Nietzsche that is accessible to us is On the Genealogy of Morals. According to Nietzsche, the purpose of this book is to call attention to his previous writings. That said, it does more than that so you don’t need to worry so much about reading his other books.

                  In this book, he expands on the cryptic aphorisms that he brings up in Beyond Good and Evil and offers a discussion or morality in a work that is more accessible than a lot of his previous work.

                  Buy “On the Genealogy of Morals” here.

                  9. Everything Is F*cked

                    The only book on this list that’s been written in the past few years, this book by Mark Manson aims to explain why we all need hope while also accepting that hope can often lead us to ruin too.

                    While many of the books on this list are all practical, this one is the most realistic one since not even the greatest of philosophical minds could predict things like technology, Twitter, and how our political world has shaped.

                    Manson delivers a profound book that taps into the minds of our ancestral philosophers, such as Plato, Nietzsche, and Tom Waits, and digs deep into various topics and how all of it is connected—religion and politics, our relationship with money, entertainment, and the internet.

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                    Overall, this book serves as a challenge to all of us—a challenge to be more honest with ourselves and connect with the world in a way we’ve never tried before.

                    Buy “Everything Is F*cked” here.

                    10. Reasons and Persons

                      One of the most challenging philosophy books to read on this list, Reasons and Persons will send you on quite the trip. Through a lot of painstaking logic, Derek Parfit shows us some unique perspectives on self-interest, personhood, and whether our actions are good or evil.

                      Considered by many to be an important psychological text around the 20th century, the arguments made about those topics will open your mind to a brand new way of thinking.

                      Buy “Reasons and Persons” here.

                      11. The Republic of Plato

                        Written by Plato himself, this book is the origin of political science and offers a brilliant critique of government. As you would expect, the critique is still important today. If you’re looking to understand the inner thoughts of Plato, this is one of the best books around.

                        Buy “The Republic of Plato” here.

                        Final Thoughts

                        Philosophy books take a while to digest as they provide profound knowledge and leave you with many questions. With many of these philosophy books, you need to take your time with them, and you might have to read through them a few times as well. And with every read, your mind will only expand.

                        More Books to Open Your Mind

                        Featured photo credit: Laura Chouette via unsplash.com

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