The Least Important Person in the Room

“Don’t forget, you’re the least important person in the room,” was advice that Decca Mitford’s governess delivered her and her sisters in their storied childhood, which is not very fashionable guidance a century later from a psychological point of view. And yet it’s useful to me. Perhaps because I was fortunate enough to be brought up with love and support and self-esteem, the audacity enough to believe that I matter—which is audacity that sometimes needs to be tempered a bit.

I love the advice, “Don’t forget, you’re the least important person in the room,” because with it comes the freedom to do whatever the hell you want. Nobody’s watching. Nobody cares. Blogs, by their nature, are marginal, obscure. (Remember: “well-known blogger” is an oxymoron.) Blogs are different from the scrutiny of social media too, timelines unfolding in threads. Nope, it’s likely on your blog that nobody’s watching, and there is opportunity that comes with that. For you to worry less about what other people think, and it instead partake in an in-depth study of what you think. To try stuff out, to ask the questions you don’t quite know the answers to, to dare to (thoughtfully) be wrong about something.

And why not? No one’s watching. Which permits you to write with lack of self-consciousness that—paradoxically—will make readers actually be interested in what you have to say.