Sunday, April 16, 2017

Stop Worrying About Other People's Opinions

Thought of the day: 

You can't control what happens around you—or other people for that matter. However, you can control your actions or reactions to outside stimuli. Don't allow other people to get under your skin. ~Penelope Winthrop~

I began to see a gradual shift in my life when I stopped worrying about what other people thought about me and started focusing on who I am, my destiny, and how I can make a positive difference in other people's lives.

And guess what? You can do it, too.

Speaking from experience, it's not nearly as difficult to become the person you want to be when you stop allowing other people to get inside of your head. Who truly dictates your life? You or the people surrounding you? 

Let it go.

When people accuse you of something you are not—ignore them. Brush it off. For example, if someone calls you a racist online, and yet you have never been racist in your entire life, you have a couple of options. You can fight back, try to understand their underlying emotions, or you can let it go. People have a habit of taking out their frustrations on those around them or in the digital world where you probably won't ever encounter them again anyway. 

I get it, people piss you off at times. However, why waste your time and energy on someone who obviously has their mind made up about who you are as a person? To defend your pride? It's not worth the headache or frustration you'll feel. Think about it, does it really make you feel better to argue with some stranger on the internet? Move beyond them and stay focused on your goals because you simply cannot control anyone, much less everything else. 

Everyone progresses differently

Your business associate's firm is gaining clients at a faster rate than yours. Both of you utilize a similar marketing plan, both of you are working 70-hour weeks. And yet, you feel like you're not doing enough. Your associate tells you to do this and that to get better results. However, it's not working. You feel frustrated because you're not progressing quickly enough to satisfy your desires. 

An excerpt from "The Experience of Insight" by Joseph Goldstein says this: "Some progress quickly with a lot of pain, and others progress quickly with a lot of pleasure... But if we're facing in the right direction, all we have to do is keep on walking." 

Accept the fact that each person (and business) progresses differently than the next. Patience is the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset. In all aspects of life, whether it be business or physical fitness, you have to be patient and trust that your hard work is paying off. Keep moving forward with your eyes on the goal. 

Know your worth.

Realize that the true you, underneath all those layers of the fake you, is worthy of love, being accepted, and deserves to be treated well. Look within to uncover and shed those layers. Don't subdue your spark because you're afraid you'll outshine someone or because you fear others won't approve. You are worthy of more than you could ever imagine. 

Once you've become in tune with your true self, surround yourself with people who share your interests. Those are the people you should be associating with—not those for whom you wear your facade. Additionally, kick the people, who drag you down or abuse you, to the curb. Those people who never have anything nice to say—Gone! Those people who think your dreams are unattainable or stupid—Good riddance! Those people who lie to you and make you feel like crap—Gone, gone, gone! Don't be afraid to cut the toxic people from your life. Know your worth, and don't compromise it.

Be content in your path

It took me years to accept that my path wasn't something to look down upon. As someone who became a mother at the age of 19, life was rough. Life was always rough for me but that's for another post. So, when I realized that a good majority of the people I grew up with and other friends of mine were doing far better than I was, well, it was a very hard pill to swallow. It became a very difficult time period. Those were very dark days that I managed to eventually push through. 

Block out the negativity and hateful self-talk. It's really making life difficult for you and will continue to do so if you let it. Even now if I don't stay mindful of the current course I'm on, I occasionally catch myself wondering why I'm not as accomplished as others my age. That's when I remind myself of all the things I have accomplished, in spite of all the obstacles that have been thrown in my path. Sure, I could be doing much better but this is the path for me and I'm content with that—no matter who approves/disapproves. Be grateful, not hateful because life could be much worse.

Let it out

If someone has you frustrated or upset, speak with someone you trust, write it down but don't keep it bottled up. It will only make things worse for you if you keep your feelings tightly corked. It's one thing to brush off someone's opinion without letting it bother you but a totally different thing if you push it way down and allow it to fester at the bottom of your feelings. Don't do that. Let them out, acknowledge the feelings are there, speak to someone about it, and face the issue head on.

You know, when someone criticizes you, it's typically a reflection of how they feel about themselves. I wouldn't worry about anyone else's opinion because the only one that truly matters is yours. What makes you happy? What makes you feel secure? What are your goals? Accept yourself, love yourself, and find inner peace. Once you do, you're free, and life will become a lot easier. Only then will you be free to become the person you want to be and to live life on your own terms.

Thanks for reading!

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