Do not take counsel from your fears.
-- Gen. Thomas J. (Stonewall) Jackson, CSA
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single girl wearing a string bikini must, on some occasion, lose her top; but hopefully, not her bottom, while swimming or pursuing other activities. This is a mundane fact of life: an event may occur on occasion during a summer. Unfortunately, the emotional response to it is embarassment and even deep shame. Shame is not rational; it does not take excuses.
My Mama once counseled me after I had an episode of this type. In the future, be matter of fact if some guys happen to see your ta-tas*, rather than hysterical! Just demurely cover yourself, retrieve your missing top, and put things right with as little or no ado as possible. In other words, act like this is a normal, everyday occurrence. In a real way, she was stating a implicit psychology: people are programmed to read your reactions as cues for how they should act. In other words, they will see this as one more semiinteresting event on the beach, but not one to revisit later on to get you in a tizzy.
She had a further bit of advice: Bring last year's swimsuit along in your beach bag so that you can immediately provide a replacement, should it be needed. Or a t-shirt made of thick material that could serve as a cover-up in lieu of the top. In fact, this was a good partial solution to the wearing a wet swimsuit top when you're no longer in the water! It's a much nicer way to go anywhere off the beach after a swim!
Actually, I think this example could serve as a model of how to handle those small, everyday examples of awkwardness or embarassments. If you spill your coffee at a café, simply wipe it up, and act like nothing at all happened. If you stutter or lisp or make a Spoonerism, just act matter of fact. Chances are, most people will not notice.**
We are not totally the slaves to our emotions. They can be influenced by our actions and thoughts. And, finally, you can have some impact on the conditions around yourself.
*Strangely enough, this is both a Cajun word and the one used in slang.
**This principle does not apply if you are running for public office. Every misstep will be re-reported ad naseam. In the public sector, there is no grace given to those who err.
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