As someone who is constantly trying to challenge themselves and grow in life, I will admit that there are times where I find myself overly worrying about what others think about me. It’s as though this need for acceptance is constantly lingering and just never seems to go away.
For example, this morning I woke up and was wondering what I should write about today. Instead of thinking about what I actually wanted to write about and the thoughts that were passing through my mind, I started asking myself “What do others want me to write about? What’s can I write about that is going to please others?”
That’s not why I started writing. I started writing as a way for me to express myself and as a way for me to share the thoughts that I am thinking. Hopefully, my thoughts resonate with others and help them in some way, but I don’t need to prove myself to anybody. I did that for years and it didn’t get me anywhere in life.
All of this got me thinking. Why do we all crave this need for acceptance? Why do we care so much about what others think of us to the point where we are willing to completely disregard how we feel about ourselves and what it is that we want out of life?
Hence my reasoning for writing this. While that need for acceptance will never go away completely, it also doesn’t have to control our lives as much as we allow it to. That’s why I want to share 4 simple steps to get over your need for acceptance and on with your life.
I can truly say that I wish I would have had these tips back in the day when I felt miserable about myself and allowed others to control my every move.
So… here it goes. Here are 4 simple steps to help you get over your need for acceptance.
Step 1: See Yourself As A Success
Have you made mistakes in the past?
Absolutely! We all have.
Making mistakes is natural. If you aren’t making mistakes in life, you simply aren’t trying hard enough.
The key to finding success in life isn’t to prevent yourself from ever making mistakes. The key to finding success in life is to allow yourself to make mistakes, to learn from the mistakes that you made, and to get right back up and continue to move forward.
Whatever route you choose to take in life, whatever goals you have for yourself, see yourself as a success. You are the only person who can stand in the way of you and your goals. The only time the mistakes you make along the way will ever be able to stop you from achieving the goals is if you allow them to.
It doesn’t matter what anybody else says about you, believe in yourself and you will succeed.
Step 2: Take The Unconventional Way
We have this need for acceptance simply because we have the desire to fit in. We want to feel included, we want to feel apart of something, and we want to feel liked and loved.
But ask yourself something. All of the individuals whose acceptance you are striving for, where are they at in life? Are they really making the most out of their lives and chasing their goals, or are they simply going through the motions of life just like the majority of the world?
The conventional way of life is rather boring. If we continue to conform to this conventional way of living, we are going to end up just like everybody else. Where’s the fun in that?
It’s those who take the unconventional way that really have a life worth living. It’s those who take the unconventional way that achieve their goals and get to do whatever they want whenever they want.
Needless to say, if you take the unconventional way and are judged by those around you, you are probably on the right path to a happier and more meaningful life.
I hope that made sense…
Step 3: Be YOU And Don’t Limit Yourself
This is what really resonated with me this morning. I was so focused on what I thought others wanted me to write about and what I thought people wanted to read, that I forgot to be me and write what I wanted to write about.
In writing (and life in general), we are told to stick with a certain niche. If it’s not a niche, it’s another defining category like a genre, a clique, etc. Any time we ever venture out of this group, people start to look at us sideways and judge us for being different.
In thinking about this, I kept asking myself “Why would I want to write about just one topic?”
The thing is, I don’t want to write about just one topic. My life is more than just one niche. There are many things that I find interesting in life, many things that I want to do, and many different moving parts that make up my life, not just one.
The point is, don’t limit yourself. Be who YOU want to be. If that means writing about many different topics, do it. If that means being the first in your family to go to or not to go to college to pursue your dreams, do it. If that means going against the advice of those around you, do it.
Be you, be proud of who YOU are, and live your life how you see fit.
Step 4: Love Yourself
All of this boils down to loving yourself. Life is going to be incredibly difficult and challenging if you do not love yourself.
Those around you are only going to show you the same amount of love and respect as you are willing to show yourself. If you don’t think highly of yourself, why would others? If you don’t respect yourself why would others respect you? If you have a need for acceptance, give others a reason to accept you, and do so by loving yourself.
Now, this isn’t to say that you think of yourself as being better than others. It means that regardless of the highs and love, you love yourself no matter what. You don’t need to be accepted by others in order to love yourself. You love yourself because you know that you are you and being you is always going to be your greatest strength.
Before You Go
Now that you know how to get over your need for acceptance, do your best to focus on just being yourself. Don’t follow the path you think you need to follow. Create your own and accept yourself before worrying about being accepted by others.
There isn’t one right or wrong way to live your life, just your way. No matter what you choose to do, there are always going to be others out there who are going to judge you for your differences. Be judged for being the true version of you instead of being judged for someone you’re not.