Rewrite Embarrassment: Turn Facepalm Moments Into Comic Gold

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Life is often full of sloppy, cringe-worthy moments that make us look back and either want to go hide under our duvet or blush like a bashful cartoon woodland creature.

We tourment ourselves over the what ifs, the Steve Urkel-esque “did I do thats?”, and replay them on the big screen of our mind. But we also can turn these kinds of moments into relatable, productive, and creative comics… Essentially healing ourselves from reliving it into sharing it. Giving it a new kind of energy.

I had one of these moments myself.

I was walking down the street with my dad on Father’s Day and spotted the bouncy locks belonging to a guy I knew striding up the sidewalk towards us. Once he was close enough, I smiled at him to say “hi!” but what strangely came out of my mouth was not a singular “hello” it was: “hi, guys!” <-- the plural fully emphasized.

I can’t stress enough: he was by himself. Completely. Alone.

I was mortified and confused. By the time I thought of a decent come back, he was way past us. I spiraled: “am I literally losing it?” “What did he think?” “That was so weird.” “I know how to count. 1 person. 2 people.”

So I stewed in the replay of the moment until a light bulb went off: why not look at it differently? I started writing it into a comic, loving up the fact that we all do weird stuff like that + put it in a much lighter perspective. It wasn’t as big of a deal or a drama as I made it but it sure was a great story to tell!

With that, I healed the cycle and made it into something that felt good instead of something I continued looking back on in a not-so-great-way.

Here’s how I put it together and below it, you’ll find a prompt and template to use to see one of your real life face-palm moments in a new light and give it the same comic treatment.

Writing prompt: rewrite an embarrassing moment

• What’s something that you’ve done/said that embarrassed you? Think of something that keeps nagging at you. It can be as small and silly as you want.

• How might you be able to look at it differently? Write the first things that come to mind…don’t judge.

• How can you convey this visually? Write step-by-step how it’d play out in pictures.

You know what you’ve just done? You’ve written a draft for a comic! (YAY!) Keep track of those embarassing, messy moments and write them down. You’ll be surprised how it not only helps the situation feel better but brings amazing comics into life.

This post is part of the February theme of: Healing. See more of the month’s posts here.

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