The Power of Not Caring (2015)
Chapter 4: In the Real World
One of the greatest obstacles to your success is probably your approval-seeking behavior. When you try to control other people's way of thinking, you would most likely end up being controlled by fear. Here is a list of many great reasons why you should stop caring too much about others opinions.
Not everyone will like you.
People will always have bad things to say about others. It is just a reflection of their insecurities. You cannot make them change, but you can change your perception by stopping the habit of caring too much.
You do not need their "approval" in order to be happy.
Their approval is not a prerequisite to your happiness; so do not allow them to define your worth as a person. You are good enough regardless of what they think or say about you.
People will think about whatever they want to think about.
There is no way to control other people's thoughts. They will keep thinking what they want to think about. As mentioned in the earlier chapter of this book, everyone has their own prejudices that affects their judgment. It is not something you can control.
Seeking approval is a waste of time and energy.
If you cannot change the way people think, then why spend your time and energy trying? It simply does not make any sense. Imagine the things you can accomplish if you can spend your time and energy on more productive activities.
Take control of your own life.
If you feel like someone else is holding the string and you are the puppet. It came to be that way, because you allowed it to be. You impose these limitations and restrictions on yourself by caring too much about other people's opinions and expectations, but you should be controlling your life. You should make the decisions that suit you. Otherwise, you will ultimately suffer from unhappiness just trying to please others.
Your approval is what is most important.
Some people may genuinely like you. Others may absolutely hate you. And some could not care less.
When you learn to accept yourself for who you are, it becomes less important of what others may think of you. If you are confident about who you are as a person, you will be happier. At the end of the day, what matters the most is to understand the value of self acceptance, and living a happy and fulfilling life.
Nobody is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes. There are things that are totally out of your control including how other people react about you. Accept this as a fact and you will learn to be more self-forgiving and more self-accepting.
We are social beings and it is quite normal for us to consider other people's opinions. In fact, in some ways, this can be helpful to our growth, but anything in excess can be hurtful rather than helpful. So, what must you do?
Pay attention and stop worrying.
Nothing good comes from worrying too much. You will only suffer from anxiety and become trapped in an unhappy life. Realize the fact you are your worst critic. Do not read too much on things or take comments too seriously.
Pick only those that matter.
You know you are in trouble when you care too much about a complete stranger's opinions. Know whose opinions matter the most in your life, but even then, draw limitations.
Just because someone gives you a negative feedback does not mean they do not like you in a personal level. You may be able to use the feedback for improvement. When you receive one, ask yourself whether or not it will help you improve if you apply it in your personal life.
You may find yourself torn between considering what makes you happy and what makes the important people in your life happy. People who truly care about you will not be concerned whether or not you take their advice. Their main concern is your happiness and self fulfillment.
Sure, your parents may be a little disappointed when you do not go to the college that they picked out. They only want the best for you, but they will certainly understand the fact that you want to fulfill your own dreams.
Set your own goals. Never let anyone do it for you.
Don't forget to protect your values. Consult your values when something does not feel or seem right. Have conviction, and people will respect you.
Remember, Life is not about being popular. Free yourself from that kind of mentality. Do not be afraid to fight for things you want even when no one is supporting you.
If you want to set yourself free and be happy, know who you are and know where you are going. You can only live your life to the fullest when you fulfill your own purpose. Being considerate about other people is a good trait, but know your boundaries. It is your life. After all, you are now free to choose on how you live it.