The simple and honest truth is that everyone cares about something; aka the kind of stuff that really matters to them. Typically these are things such as love, family, work, money, status, etc etc. It’s human, and very normal, to feel this way.
The wider problem though, is that too many of us worry about things that aren’t important — and that simply don’t matter. These are usually the things that we can’t control, i.e. the opinions of others, what other people say about us, or whether or not someone else likes us. And this isn’t a good thing to do; because not only does it affect your mental health, confidence and happiness, but it can also hold you back in life.
I believe that a lot of us women are the worst for it. I’m generalising and stereotyping here, (so forgive me if this isn’t applicable you), but a great deal of women I know, both online and offline, care so much about other people’s thoughts, they are then paralysed with dreaming too big.
We worry about how others perceive us, which is risky, because in a lot of cases this means we don’t feel able to ‘go’ for things in life, for the fear of being laughed at or talked about. Like starting a business, applying for the big promotion, or doing public speaking. We ‘get the fear’, make excuses and talk ourselves out of it.
It’s easier and more comfortable to stay exactly as we are though, isn’t it? In this current state. People know us for this. No-one will judge us, or point at us, if we stay right here. If we keep our heads down.
Forbes.com said on the matter, “When you stop giving a damn about what people think, your self-confidence will definitely shoot through the roof faster than you can ever imagine. You’ll start to believe in yourself and what you can offer the world, without letting outside influences stop you or sway your decisions”. But a lot of us do concern ourselves with the opinions and validation of others, don’t we? In fact, we’re a little obsessed. Such as what they may say about us in closed Facebook groups, how many likes we get on an Instagram photo, or how many mates we have at the school gate/at work.
So how do you stop caring about what other people think of you (without parading around like a total bitch) and get on with living a happy life?
For me I’ve quite simply started focusing only on the stuff that really matters to me. Which are my kids, my husband, my close family, my close friends, my work, fitness and my hobbies. These are the things that I put my full attention, love and energy into. They bring me joy and happiness. This is where I get ALL of my fulfilment and self-worth.
And I’ve thus stopped seeking approval from others (usually people I don’t know) for things I do. Like on social media. I don’t measure myself by how many likes or followers I have anymore. If I like the photo I posted, then that’s enough for me. Same for my work; if I’m really proud of what I have produced for a client, and they’re pleased with my delivery too, then that’s my measure.
I have also surrounded myself with more positivity in my life, i.e. I don’t indulge in any negativity anymore, both online or offline. If it starts I change the subject, walk away or distance myself from it. I now only rub shoulders with positive people who motivate me, lift me up and get me — so that when I do try something new I have a good support network and infrastructure around me.
I also personally believe (more so nowadays) that everyone is SO busy focusing on their own life and their own hustle that they don’t actually care that much for you! It’s true. And if they do laugh at you (they probably won’t), who cares? Ignore them/block them/cut them out. Surely starting your own venture, or getting the job you really want, or enrolling on that course you always fancied, is worth it more? And, if it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t matter. Trying it will make you feel great, give you more confidence for the next thing you do, plus you’ll learn heaps of stuff on the way (making mistakes is a great way of learning). Also, you’ll never, ever end up with that disappointed feeling that you didn’t even try.
Medium.com said in article that we should forget about pleasing all the external people we come across and instead focus on our own close group of people. “These people — your champions — they understand your quest or cause. They make you feel good when you’re around them, make you laugh or make you feel like you can just be yourself. They’re important. Focus on them instead”.
The article also says, “Embrace this, my friends, for it is true freedom. The world is vast and you are small, and therefore you may do as you wish and cast your thoughts of those who dislike it to the side”.
So, mastering the art of not giving fuck about what other people think of you? Well, it’s quite straightforward really. Focus on yourself, your closest people, your biggest passions, and ignore all of the background noise.
Written by Editor, Jess Soothill