Daily Blog #272
We have all heard it many times before, “Quit worrying about what others think of you.” Maybe you heard it from your parents, maybe you heard it from a friend, or maybe you have even heard it from me. But I get it, it’s a lot easier said than done. I mean, after all, if somebody is telling you to quit something, you should at least be given a reason why. Otherwise, why should you quit what’s comfortable?
That is where I come in. I am going to give you the reasons to why you should quit worrying about what others think of you. How do I know what I am talking about? Because I have lived it for many, many years. And when others would tell me to stop caring about what others thought of me, I probably had a similar reaction to what you are thinking right now, “Who the hell are you to tell me what to do?”
But if you take a minute to listen to me and hear me out, I promise that you will not only feel better about yourself, but you will be a happier individual as well.
I was in my sophomore year of high school, and was hanging out with a new crowd. This crowd was what everyone thought of as the “cool crowd.” I knew that if I could get them to like me, then maybe I could get everyone to like me. And yes, while this story happened in high school, it is still relevant to what a lot of us experience as adults.
I had been hanging out with this group for a few months, and after those few months, I was finally starting to get invited to parties. Before long, I thought that I had done it – I thought I had become one of the cool kids. From that point on, I assumed that school was going to be fun, and that I was finally going to be popular.
Then came the day where everything went south. We were all hanging out in between classes when one of the individuals started passing out invites to their party. As that individual passed out the invitations, I remember patiently waiting for mine. But that invite never came. Out of the thirty of us that were hanging out together, I was the only person who did not get invited to the next party. Everybody else had smiles on their faces, and I just stood there.
I will never forget how little that experience made me feel. In looking back as I am older, I realize that it is such a minor problem to have, but try telling that to a high schooler in the heat of the moment. At that time, all of my confidence had completely vanished. I wanted so badly to be liked, and here it felt like I had been knocked down, and my face was being shoved in a pile of dirt.
That experience still wasn’t enough to end my craving for attention. That individual who had made me feel so shallow played a role during many stages in my life. Through my weight loss journey, I used what that person told me to fuel my motivation. I listened to them when they called me fat, and I listened to them when they told me that nobody liked me. Eventually, I started to believe them. Not only did I believe that others didn’t like me, but I also didn’t like myself.
To be honest, I am expecting absolutely zero sympathy from you. All of the pain that I experienced because of this individual was completely self-inflicted. And it wouldn’t be fair to say that the struggles that I have experience in life are solely because of this individual, but they definitely did not help to make me feel any better.
So why in the heck am I sharing this high school sob story with you? What good is this possibly going to do for you? I am sharing this with you because I want you to see that if you worry about what others think of you, those thoughts and judgements have the potential to haunt you for years even after the fact. At least it did for me.
I took what somebody told me, and I allowed that judgement to consume my life for years. But even more-so, I allowed that judgement to alter the person that I wanted to become. The saddest part is, while I was so worried about what that person thought about me and as I became fixated on their approval, they were out there living their life to the fullest without even knowing the pain and struggle that I was going through. Not only that, but they wouldn’t have cared even if they knew.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not sitting here trying to act higher and holier than that individual. I mean, who am I to judge somebody else when I am far from perfect myself. In fact, we are all far from perfect. And that is exactly my point. There is no such thing as perfection, so why should you care about what other imperfect people think. Everybody is always going to have an opinion, but their opinion doesn’t make them right. After years of self-inflicted pain, I finally started to realize that.
We are all going to go through many ups and downs, but don’t let the opinions and judgement from others stop you from being who you truly are. The minute you allow others to control your life is the minute that they win. If you want to prove those individuals wrong, then the best way to do so isn’t by getting even or stooping to their level, it is by staying true to yourself, and by being the best version of you that you can be.
Know your worth, live your life, and love yourself for the incredible person that you are. You are you, and that is your greatest superpower. Go out and follow your dreams, and strive to make the world a better place each and every day.