Why You Shouldn’t Bother With Other People’s Opinion Of You
By Guest Blogger Heather Matthews
“Instead of worrying about what you cannot control, shift your energy to what you can create.” ― Roy T. Bennett
Some people burden themselves with thinking too much about things beyond their control. For instance, you might be preoccupied with what your friends or colleagues think about you.
I can tell you that this is an exercise in futility, but it wouldn’t matter. You probably know this already, but it’s really hard to stop yourself from thinking about the what-ifs.
For example, it’s common for people to think “What if I get criticized for saying what I really feel?”
Or you might be telling yourself “What if they don’t like me and they’re just pretending?”
If you’re decisions and actions are constantly influenced by what others might say and think, then you know that you have a problem.
It’s not easy to abandon this way of thinking but there are some steps you can take to gradually reprogram your mind and let go of needless worrying.
#1. Be more self-aware
When it comes to thought patterns, they tend to run on auto-pilot out of habit. You need to take a step back and try to understand your reasons for being so worried about other people’s opinions in the first place.
It could be because of the way you act or express yourself is a bit different from the groups of people you’re usually with. This also includes your values and principles which may not necessarily align with others.
Understand that this happens all the time and you shouldn’t take it against yourself. Once you practice this kind of awareness, you’ll have a more objective view of the situation and not worry so much.
It’s also equally important to develop the habit of catching yourself when you start having those what-if kind of thoughts. Remember that it’s pointless to hem and haw over possibilities that may or may not happen.
#2. Don’t be so hard on yourself
Would you rather be a happy, confident person who brightens the lives of others…
…or do you prefer being miserable and consumed by thoughts of self-judgment?
Obviously, no one wants the latter but a lot of people unconsciously beat themselves up over other people’s thoughts.
If you want to be a more positive person and make others feel good around you, you have to actively set aside time for self-care.
After all, you can’t give what you don’t have.
A few things you could do are:
– Be more physically active
– Eat whole foods that are good for you
– Engage in a fulfilling hobby
– Visit friends and family
– Practice mindfulness through meditation
Once you make a bigger effort to take care of your own needs, you’ll find that you’ll care a whole lot less about what others think of you.
It helps to think of it this way – our time in this world is limited. Why waste it on feeling bad and punishing yourself for things that don’t really matter?
#3. Hang out with a different crowd
Instead of wasting your energy worrying about what some people think, look for those who can inspire you and help you grow as a person.
Don’t let other people’s toxic behavior poison your well-being.
There are so many others out there who won’t judge you and can see your good qualities.
Seek groups who are like-minded and share the same interest as you. Chances are you’ll be on the same frequency as them and form genuine, empowering connections.
As the famous entrepreneur, Jim Rohn said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”
Take this as an opportunity to reconsider the quality of the company you keep. Are they supportive and do they want you to succeed in life? If not, they could be doing the opposite.
Don’t be afraid to have a “social makeover” and find people who can be a positive presence in your life.
Remember, your mission is not to please every single person you meet in your life. Step out of the shadow of their expectations and be your own person.
Take control of your destiny and generate your own happiness and fulfillment. No one else can do that for you.