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”In my eyes, you’re a proud failure! When I look at you, I get an intense feeling in my heart.”
You ever had moments where you thought blushing was bad? Instead of thinking of the embarrassment it might give you, think about looking at it as a way to be a more positive person. The quiet yet powerful femme fatale of Masashi Kishimoto’s NARUTO, Hinata Hyuga, certainly did so. Her character (and also immense popularity) provides an insight on what makes blushing one of the most unique expressions done by human beings.
Born and raised under a strict lifestyle by the Hyuga family and rejected by them, Hinata would find solace with Naruto Uzumaki. She admired his desire to be relevant despite his status as an outcast. Since then, Hinata developed a crush on Naruto and would blush heavily every time she saw him. Not even her family’s demands to stay away from Naruto would stop her from being around him. Hinata finally confessed her love to Naruto during an important battle against the Akatsuki. She hopes to be together with him when the current Shinobi World War ends.
As everyone knows, we’re the only animals that have the ability to blush. Its reputation for being an expression for embarrassment is unparalleled. Yet by being embarrassed, it shows that you care. You’re worried about what is happening around you. Look how happy Hinata gets when she sees Naruto training hard. An interesting study on blushing indicates that if you blush in front of a group of people, it makes you appear trustworthy to them. Naruto seems to get that feeling when he talks to Hinata. After all, he can relate to her struggles as he’s been through similar experiences.
Blushing helps to maintain the social status quo as well. Let’s put it this way. Hinata can’t help but blush over Naruto, but that’s fine as she doesn’t try to get into his way. She knows that Naruto has a huge responsibility in being the savior of Konoha. In a sense, blushing helps to remind Hinata to focus on herself and train hard to be as strong as the man she loves. The time for romance isn’t there yet.
What’s intriguing is that Hinata’s personality goes through a huge shift when she actually tries to save Naruto from the wrath of Akatsuki member, Pain. She was able to talk to him with an aura of confidence. Hinata looked as if she was sick and tired of letting embarrassment define her life. Feeling embarrassed is normal, but it can make someone not do something beneficial out of the fear of being criticized. You can say that it “overprotects” you if you let it.
Case in point: people possibly warning her not to confess to Naruto, when it’s arguably the best thing to do for Hinata psychologically. What if the time never came for Hinata to confess her love to Naruto? After all, it is a bit delusional to believe (let’s pretend that Naruto isn’t powered by plot devices for a second) that there is a 100% chance that he won’t die in battle. The fact that Hinata tried to escape one extreme (always blushing around Naruto) and went into another (willing to sacrifice her life to protect him) might sound irrational to some folks. But as the saying goes, love makes people do crazy things. Sometimes those crazy things can be wonderful.
Even with the benefits it can give, blushing is still considered a problem for those who have social anxiety issues. Perhaps what we can learn from Hinata is that blushing should be embraced, but not to the point where you become overly self-conscious. If blushing does make one look attractive, then Hinata is damn fine. No wonder she is considered to be more popular than the main heroine, Sakura Haruno.
Next time you blush over something, just smile. After all, to blush is to be human.