“What are people thinking of me?”
“What if they don’t like me?”
“Should I have worn that? Was it not appropriate?”
“What if these men don’t find me attractive?”
“Did I screw everything up?”
“I feel so awful about the way I acted.”
“What if they all turn against me?”
“What if he doesn’t like me?”
“WHY doesn’t he like me?”
“What do they really think about me?? How could I find out?”
Women are good at this. In fact, I’ve never known a woman who hasn’t been good at this. But, being good at something that is bad for you is rarely actually good for you. Even though you might think it is.
Women worry themselves sick, and (literally make themselves physically sick) worrying what others might think of them and putting themselves through guilt for things that aren’t even their fault. And with facebook and twitter and our lives becoming so public these days, a lot of people are having trouble overcoming social anxiety.
This is what happens when you go EXTERNALLY to look for away to feel sure of yourself. It’s an external answer to an internal problem. And it’s not even a good answer.
Here’s the thing: we all want to be loved.
The only problem is that, in trying to get that love, we try to be like everyone else. We’re afraid that if we do this or that, they’ll judge us, and think poorly of us. So we try to please. Isn’t that the way it is?
In order to get the love of our peers, we try to blend in, in order to avoid standing out.
If we stand out, they might judge us. If we stand out, if we express what we think – if we don’t wear any make up when they wear a whole Revlon counter – if they don’t like our new boyfriend – we might die. Socially.
Or so you seduce yourself in to thinking.
And then we go home and wonder why we feel miserable. Why we have trouble falling asleep. Why we’re so scared to approach or meet NEW friends, or new people.
It’s because we’re not being ourselves. It’s as if we need permission to be.
As far as I see it, you either be yourself (be authentic), or you fit in. Most people fit in.
What do you choose?
If you choose to be yourself, good. Keep reading. If you choose to fit in, this isn’t a place for you.
Here’s how to stop worrying what others think of you…
There is only one way to truly stop obsessing over what other people think of you. I was shown exactly how by my man David; both through example, and through discussion. And I feel forever indebted to him for this lesson.
The only way is to know for SURE, within yourself, WHY you do what you do.
This could mean: knowing what you stand for or knowing your own true intentions.
In other words: you can NEVER go OUTWARDS to look for a way (for YOU) to accept your very own self. And expect to feel better.
You can never look outwards, to others, for acceptance. This habit destroys us. It’d paralyzing. How can you do anything? Or take any action, if you fear what others might think of that action?
It’s never about what you DO (people confuse being judged for what they DO with their true INTENTIONS)
That’s why it’s never about what you do; i’s about your intentions. And if you know for sure your own good intentions; then there’s nothing to worry about.
An example: In recent years, like most people, I’ve been invited to events or parties, and on one occasion, I was invited by the host – but when I arrived there, I was not even greeted, ignored when I approached the host to greet them, and left feeling somewhat dumbfounded, wondering: ‘why didn’t they talk to me? What’s going on? Why the hell did they invite me anyway? What did I do? Did I do something? I can’t believe I wasted my time!’
And drove myself crazy thinking about it – until I learned this strategy on how to STOP.
The only solution was to KNOW, deep in my heart, my own true intentions; and that I have good intentions. Regardless of what others think.
This is kind of like a longer version of the term “know thyself”.
Judgments are cheap (they’re everywhere)
See, judgments are cheap. Because people are doing it all the time. There’s no shortage of judgments. It’s the easiest thing for a human to do; pass judgments. And they’ll never stop. You could be a Mother Teresa and people will still make up stuff about you and your intentions. You cannot escape judgments. Even you make judgments. We all do.
Would you pay$10,000 to get punched in the face by someone who doesn’t care about you?
Well then, don’t pay the exact same price in your health (stress, tension in your body, anxiety, worry, which can make you very sick) over what some people who don’t even care about you are thinking of you, and what judgments they are making of you.
Here’s the exception…
On the other hand – if you struggle socially and worry about what people are thinking of you – and you ARE in fact deliberately out to try to feel good about yourself by making OTHER people feel bad – then you might deserve to be rejected socially. And you might worry, but that still wouldn’t really serve you.
Instead – CHANGE. Start having good intentions.
Anything that is done from a place where you want to TAKE from other people’s lives is a bad intention.
But if you are merely just BEING YOU – and you are not out to hurt people, or make them feel like they are ‘less’ than you, make them feel guilty or hurt, and if you’re not out to destroy anything – then what do you have to fear?
It’s your responsibility to remember your own intentions, and take confidence and certainty in that at times when you really fear what other people are thinking of you.
But here’s the key: only YOU know your true intentions. You could have totally good intentions, and a man doesn’t want to date you, or people don’t want to socialize with you because they’re unsure of you, they’re unsure of themselves, or just because they were taught by their aunt Betty that they should stay away from people who wear pink t-shirts, or because it’s too far out of their comfort zone, or because they feel they have nothing to add to your life. Yes, it’s true!
If you go and have a conversation with someone, and try to connect with them and end up sounding really weird – and what you have to say doesn’t resonate with them; should you deserve to feel bad? Do you deserve to put yourself through that worry and that stress over what you could have done better to get them to LIKE you?
All you can do is keep moving forward, keep growing, and keep knowing yourself.
Just a reminder: remember, this is NOT about coming across as, or BEING the ‘nicest’ person! (because this is again focusing on the action). You could also have great intentions and your actions are perceived as mean. That’s totally fine. After all, people who are nice all the time are boring as hell.
Focus on what you CAN control rather than on what you cannot control
Some of the world’s most well-meaning leaders and philanthropists have a trail of people judging them and thinking poorly of them.
People will think what they think. You can’t control that.
Better to focus on what you CAN control, versus what you CAN’T control. And what you can control is your own focus and intentions.
So here is your exercise: every time you notice yourself worrying what others are thinking of you, ask yourself this question:
“Am I coming from a good place in my heart?”
And if you answered ‘no’, then it’s time to correct your intention.
Question: What would you classify as a good intention and a bad intention? The more examples the better. Share with us below. I’m looking forward to hearing from you!