Does worrying about what others think stop you from trying new things? Or taking advantage of new opportunities? Maybe you feel like you can’t do something because other people might judge you. Perhaps it’s trying out a new hobby, pursuing a change of career, or simply doing something you really want to do.
There was a time when I cared so much what other people thought, that I’d make decisions just based on keeping them happy. I’d exhaust myself trying to keep up with their expectations and do things I had no interest in just to please them. Worst of all, I’d miss out on doing things I actually wanted to do because I was so worried about what they’d think.
Occasionally we all do (or don’t do) what we want because we’re worried about what other people think. And it holds us back. For some of us, this actually isn’t an ‘occasional’ thing. It’s something we do day in, day out because we’re so concerned about keeping others happy. The thing is, it’s also keeping us from doing what we truly want.
So, today I wanted to share with you 3 ways to stop caring what others think…
#1 – Ask Yourself WHY You Care
One way to stop caring what others think is to ask yourself why you’re even bothered. Why does it matter to you what other people think of your beliefs, opinions, or actions? Here are a few questions that might be helpful…
- Why does their opinion matter to you?
- Are you seeking their approval? Why?
- Are you afraid your beliefs or behavior will upset or offend them? Why?
Try to dig deeper than your immediate reaction. Whatever is the first answer that springs to mind, ask yourself WHY? This will help you get to the bottom of the reasons behind why you care what others think. It can also be helpful to question whether these thoughts are reasonable…
#2 – Get Some Perspective
As humans, we often lean towards negative thoughts rather than optimism. It’s common for us to assume that other people are thinking badly of us when they’re actually not thinking about us at all! Most people are so wrapped up in their own lives that they don’t even notice what others are up to. But our negative thought patterns lead us to jump to the conclusion that others are judging us; we’re often putting our own insecurities into their mouths!
So getting some perspective can help… How often do you judge other people? How much do you concern yourself with what they’re doing? Or whether what they’re doing is ‘right’. Probably not a lot. So it stands to reason that this runs both ways.
#3 – Surround Yourself With Like-minded People
If you don’t feel like the people in your life support your dreams or interests, then find some who do! This doesn’t mean cutting off your existing friendship groups, just expanding them to include like-minded people. Instead of trying to conform to other people’s expectations, find people who already live by yours. Take a class, join a Meetup group, or seek out a new community. Find a tribe of people who share your values and a place where you can be authentically true to yourself.
By following these three tips, you can learn to stop caring what others think and free yourself from their judgment. If you’d like help to work through negative thought patterns, then my online program can help. Break Free is a 7-day challenge designed to help you slash the negative thoughts, doubts, and fears that keep you stagnant in life. Learn more here.