What People Think of You is None of Your Business
So one of my New Years Resolutions is to be less judgmental and care less about what people think of me. This seems kind of mainstream but it has actually been something I've struggled with since I was little. I'm only now starting to emotionally and intellectually understand why that is, so I’m taking steps to overcoming it the best I can.
So I was REALLY shy growing up. I wasn't anti-social or anything like that, but I was definitely the quiet one in my group of friends. Instead of speaking, I'd listen. Instead of acting out for attention, I'd sit back and watch as the other kids were practically crying out for it. I remember one of my earliest memories was in a store with my mom. There was a girl my age (around 3 or 4) throwing a COMPLETE hissy fit over something she wanted that her mom wouldn't buy for her. I looked around and noticed her deafening cries got the attention of everyone who seemed to stop in their tracks. Four year old me was saying to myself “Look how embarrassing that is!! Everyone is staring! That will never be me.” And it wasn't...
I was always the observer, silently making mental notes about people and learned from other peoples actions. I noticed EVERYTHING and I judged. Yes I judged, a lot. Not in an LOL look at her she's so fat kind of way, but more in an educational way, I guess? It was 100% innocent. It was my way of forming opinions and conclusions about people and it was automatic.
It’s still automatic for me to this day (and people still never cease to amaze me). I’m an introvert to a T and that’ll probably never change. What I do need to work on is constantly worrying that others are doing the same to me…
I read a line in a book a while back that was so simple yet hit me hard. The funny thing is I don’t think the author even meant for it to be this deep, profound line. It was more of a passing comment she made but to me it seemed like it was in bold, all caps, size 72 font with “Dear Jennifer” in front of it.
“IF YOU JUDGE OTHERS, YOU WILL ALWAYS FEEL JUDGED”
This is my problem. I ALWAYS feel judged and it’s because I assume they are doing the same to me. When I’m talking to someone, it’s almost hard for me to have fluid, articulate thoughts because I’m so consumed with what I think THEY are thinking. It’s kind of bizarre when I think about it. OK I’m officially over the word “think”. I’ve said it toooo much. Thinking about thinking and writing about thinking what other people are thinking!? How did I graduate with a psychology degree and keep my sanity!? Remains a mystery… I digress.
This year I’m letting go.
I’ve started this blog which is a big step for me. I love writing but always avoided sharing my thoughts publicly because, you guessed it, I was worried what people would think.
Something has come over me this year and I’ve developed this mentality that I’m really loving and it goes something like this. I’m very confident with who I am as a person and what I have to offer. What people think of me, my actions and my life does not and will not affect who I am unless I allow it. I’m in control.
I’ve also made a strong effort to not formulate negative judgmental thoughts towards anyone I encounter. I’ve worked very hard on keeping my thoughts as pure and innocent as I can…ehm, unfortunately not that kind of pure and innocent. Let’s be real, “that’s what she said” is automatic whenever I get the chance to slip it in a convo ;) Oh well, baby steps…
Does anyone else have a similar mentality? I’d love for you to share. Even if this isn’t as big of an obstacle for you as it is for me, we can all use the reminder from time to time. So whenever you feel yourself worrying about the thoughts of others, remind yourself that a persons judgmental thoughts about you do NOT change anything about you. It literally does nothing! Example: You could walk into Starbucks tomorrow and a rando girl might turn to her friend and say you look like an ugly skank-wh*re, and guess what? You know who you are at the core and no one can take that from you. She’s the one that has negative views about her self, and feels better projecting them on to other people.
So I’ll finish this up with a piece of advice for myself and anyone else that could use it:
Put out to the world the genuine energy from within and how people choose to translate that will not change that energy unless you allow it.
Their thoughts are a direct reflection of them, and has very little to do with you.
It’s none of our business…