My insides are not your outsides
The cover of the book can be deceptive
It's very easy in life to look around you and assume that while you are a nervous bundle of energy, unsure of what's going on and confused for the most part about everything, those around you have it all sorted. They seem so confident. So with it. Why can't I be like them, you cry as your heart shrivels a little more.
Then, as you trundle through life, you start to spot the cracks. The telltale signs. You dabble a bit with Alfred Adler and dibble a bit with pop-psychology. And you realise that, perhaps, the others aren't quite who you thought they were. That person over there, all cock-a-hoop about doing something impressive with someone of great import. So what? She's not all that. And the reason she's making a song and dance about it is because inside, she secretly loathes herself, and so feels the need to big herself up at any opportunity.
Oh, look, that person there, he's got a loud voice and confident stance. He's got it sorted, surely. Chances are, he hasn't. He's just as racked by self-doubt as the rest of us. Sure, he can pull his shoulders back and imagine there's a cord attached to the top of his head to get good posture. But it doesn't help much when he's back at home trying to figure out how to pay the bills or get over his growing addiction to alcohol or gambling.
Obviously, I'm stereotyping to a degree here, but the point is that we're all the same. We are all novels, not the covers. We are complex and indiosyncratic. We all worry. We all have regular moments of self-doubt. That's what makes us who we are. The tragedy of the human condition is that we are permanently trapped in our own interior lives, and separated from everyone else’s. Just remember that, when you bump into people. The key is to look beyond the shiny text and pretty pictures on the covers, and read the contents of their life.
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