Embarrassing moments seem to strike at the oddest times. I guess that’s what makes them embarrassing. I seem to collect these like a child collects rocks.
Most recently, I was at a department head meeting, sitting at a table surrounded by fifteen fellow co-workers. As I was listening to the guest speaker, my cell phone buzzed, I let the call go to voicemail.
A few minutes later, I played the message. The alarm company was calling to say there was a problem at my job location. I hurriedly pushed my chair back and stood to go into the hall. My foot didn’t cooperate with my energy flow.
As I backed away from the table, my open backed shoe slipped off my foot with a thud that seemed to echo through the room. A couple of people looked up, but I felt like all eyes were on me. I just smiled at the colleague next to me and said, “I might need that,” referring to my shoe.
I slipped my shoe back onto my foot and exited the room to make a phone call. When I returned, I walked with my head held high as though nothing happened and slid back into my seat.
How do you handle an embarrassing moment? Here are three things to try.
1. Laugh at yourself – when you laugh, others will laugh with you and not at you.
2. Admit you were embarrassed – accept that you were embarrassed, this is a way of starting a friendly conversation with the person next to you.
3. Minimize the incident – this is along the same vein as, laugh at yourself. You can minimize the incident by saying something like, “it happens to the best of us.”
Have you experienced an embarrassing moment lately?