Why Other People's Opinions About You Don't Matter
Throughout my 30 years of life, I've been told all of these things about myself:
You're too nice.
You're SO Sweet.
Your enthusiasm is contagious.
You're too Pollyanna.
You're happy ALL THE TIME(you can't possibly really be this happy all the time, you must be faking it).
You're so positive.
You'd make a great Mom, I don't understand why you're unsure about having kids.
While most of these statements are true and most are more kind than unkind, they still revolve around one very simple thing -- they are other people's opinions of me.
Falling into the trap of believing other people's opinions about us is a slippery slope of disaster. Instead of listening to our own intuition and guidance we start amplifying the external voices around us. It's not long until we're both living and dying by the praise, criticism and projected fears of others, placed on us through the vehicle of other people's opinions.
How many times have we made ourselves small or haven't taken action because of the fear of how other people around us will react? This has been true for me in more ways than I'd like to admit. I almost didn't re-launch my new website because I was afraid of what people would think about me. Would my co-workers think that I wasn't dedicated to my job because I was also working on passion projects outside of work? Would people think I was "too fluffy" or "not serious" if I proclaimed that I want to speak and coach others? If I would have let those fears overtake me, I wouldn't have my new website and I wouldn't have this amazing feeling of happiness and purpose.
And… the TRUTH is -- Other people's opinions about us do not matter. Go read that again until it sinks in. These other people won't be the ones that will have to live with the regret or feeling of disappointment that you will feel if you don't go after the things that bring you joy. There is never going to be a time where everyone likes you, believes in you and supports what you're doing (I mean let's be real, if even Mother Theresa had haters, we don't have a shot at getting by without someone disliking what we're offering).
This is an easy concept to grasp when it comes to the negative opinions about you from other people, but what about the positive ones? The same holds true -- the positive opinions don't matter either. Yes, that's wonderful that people have positive opinions about you, but what matters more is that you have positive opinions about YOURSELF. You don't need external validation to make big moves in your life or show up as your most authentic self -- you have permission from yourself to do that at anytime.
You're not on this planet to go down a path that other people want you to go down, you're here to blaze your own trail and inspire others along the way. My wish for you is that you stop playing small and you stop living & breathing by what other people say about you (I see you, constantly refreshing your Insta-feed to see how many comments you have) -- stop it. Stop the madness and believe in yourself. The only opinion that matters is how you feel about YOU.