How incredible would it feel to know that you are enough, just as you are, without worrying about what people think of you?
Doubts: You run your own business but feel like a fraud. You feel like everyone's doing better than you. You worry that you didn't come across as you wanted in that conversation.
That's a lot of doubt.
Can you really stop others from thinking about you the way they do?
Does it really matter what they think?
Will it change who you are?
If you're anything like I used to be, you're probably thinking about all the negative things that others think about you, but it's not just the bad thoughts; there are good ones too. So, if you don't want to accept the bad, you can't take the good ones either, right?
The first thing to do is realise it's not all about you..I know....You thought it was!
What others think of you are just their thoughts. In fact, what others think or say about you only reflects their tastes and preferences. If someone tells you they don't like the fact that you wear casual clothes, what does it say about you? Nothing, it just tells you that they have a dislike of casual clothes. If they don't like you because of what you wear, it's their problem and reflects their thoughts...same goes for tattoos, body shape, hair colour, skin colour, and gender....
Once you've got that out of the way, ask yourself, is there truth in it?
If there is, are you are okay with it or not?
If someone says that you're miserable, think about it, is that true?
If it's valid, are you are okay with them having such an opinion?
If you are okay with it, there is nothing that you need to do. However, if it upsets you and you want to change their opinion, you have the chance to say, "Yes, I am, and I want to change. Can you help me?"
On the other hand, if their statement isn't true, you can say, "I disagree with your opinion of me. What behaviour of mine makes you think I'm miserable?" You're helping them think about their thoughts, actions and behaviour by asking.
So, stop worrying about what others are thinking of you; whatever they think isn't going to change you – you are who you are.
So, what are you going to do to change your beliefs?
Here are a couple of ideas to start coming to terms with opinions.
Start by writing down the things that you think others think about you. They might be things about your physical appearance, how much or little you talk, how qualified or unqualified you are, and how friendly or unfriendly you are.
They might be positive or negative, but be honest – no one else will read it. Keep writing until you get it out of your system.
Take time to reflect.
Once you've listed everything you think others think about you, read back through the list.
Spend some time reflecting or journalling on the following questions and the impact this might be having on your life.
How many of them do you find difficult to accept, and how many are you happy to accept?
Does it change who you are in either case?
For example, if someone thinks you're intelligent, will it make you more intelligent? Likewise, if someone thinks you're dull and stupid, does it really make you dull and stupid? Will what others think of you change who you or what you are?
You'll probably begin to realise that nothing about you can change based on what others think of you. Of course, that doesn't mean it doesn't have an impact though.
You might experience an emotional response to what others say or do. But even those emotions are not going to change who you are.
So how can you re-frame what others think of you so that it has less of an impact on your feelings? And can this really allow you to stop worrying what other people think for good?
Would you like some support to embrace who you are?
If stopping worrying about what people think feels like a leap too far, you might be interested in my Ciao Bella Retreat in Lake Garda in May; we'll be working a lot more on this very subject!