When asked by a fan, "How exactly did you overcome being shy?" I had to stop and think for a minute. I mean, it's happened so gradually, and over a long period of time, I almost didn't notice it. But as I thought about it, one instance that was really a turning point for me did come to mind.
(Age 16, Nashville, Tennessee)
I was probably sixteen, still very shy, and frequently getting comments from people attending our shows like: "You need to smile more!", "You don't look very excited to be up there...", or, "Do you really enjoy what you're doing? Because it doesn't look like it." I mean, seriously people?! I hated hearing those comments, hated it. I did love what I was doing, I just wasn't as expressive as my sisters were. I really wanted to open up, both on stage and off, but I honestly didn't know how to; it was overwhelming and scary to me. I finally went to my Dad for advice, which I should've done way sooner but, you know, redheads...we're a little stubborn sometimes. I told him all about my struggles, and how I was trying to overcome them, but it just wasn't working. That's when he gave me this advice. He said: "Meghan, stop worrying about what everyone else thinks of you, cause guess what? Most everyone out there is spending too much time worrying about what you think of THEM to even bother worrying about what they think of you."
...Just think about that for a minute.
That advice may or may not be life changing for you, but it was exactly what I needed to hear then. From that point on I slowly (key word being SLOWLY) stopped caring about what other people thought of me and just focused on being a better me.
(Age 18, Happy Video Shoot, Nashville, Tennessee Photo Courtesy Tel Stewart)
I still got comments from the audience, but instead of, "Are you bored?" I started getting things like, "You really look like you're having fun up there!" and, "I love your smile!" Hearing that positive feedback encouraged me to push myself a little more, to be a little better. Thank you to all of you who helped me on my journey; I couldn't have done it without you.
So y'all, please stop worrying about how you appear in someone else's eyes; how do YOU see yourself? Are you happy and comfortable with who you are? You should be, because you are a work of art, a masterpiece! You are a child of God.
(Age 21, Washington State Fair- Photo Courtesy Redhanded Productions)