There are two main reasons why people don’t write that book, create that YouTube channel, or start that business they’ve been thinking of: they fear they will fail or they fear being judged.
We all want to be accepted, appreciated, and valued. Naturally, we don’t want to do or say anything that will cause others to criticize us. There’s nothing intrinsically wrong with that.
The problem is when we let other people’s judgments stop us from doing what we want to do. If you care about what other people think so much so that you put aside your goals and dreams, then that’s a big problem. It needs to be fixed. Today I have 7 tips to help you do that.
Tip #1: It’s Not That Bad
When you walk into a room full of people, you may feel like others are staring at you, but they really aren’t. Just like you, those people are in their own head, focused on themselves. Ninety-nine percent of the time, people aren’t walking around thinking about you and what you’re doing.
On the occasional 1% they do think of you, it’s only for a minute at most. And chances are that minute is spent thinking of what you think of them.
If what you’re doing doesn’t pertain to them directly, chances are they aren’t worried about you. So relax. It’s not as bad as you think. People don’t think about you nearly as much as you think they do. Stop worrying so much about it.
Tip #2: Accept It. You’ll Never Please Everyone
There’s no point in letting other people’s opinions dictate your actions because in the end you will be judged regardless.
If you’re a calm person and you have a quiet voice, some people will appreciate you for that. Others will think you’re boring and back away.
Check out this quote by Dita Von Teese:
“You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.”
Accept that you’ll never be able to please everyone, so why try? Just be yourself and relax.
Tip #3: Own Your “Flaws”
The beauty of this world is that we’re all unique. We all have different likes and dislikes. Your quirks, your personality, your habits, your way of talking, and your way of being are what makes you, you. Things that you label as flaws may be the exact reason some people loooove you.
Instead of trying to change who you are in order to fit into every circle and avoid judgment, focus on the people who do relate to you. Don’t worry about the rest.
Tip #4: Think of The Worst-Case Scenario
When I started making content online, I was so afraid to tell other people. I thought they would judge me. That they would think I’m weird. When people around me started to find out, I was so worried about what they thought. I would honestly lose sleep over this. It was ridiculous.
Until one day I decided to get to the core of the issue. I sat down and journaled about it. I asked myself “What is the worst possible thing that can happen?”
The answer: they would think I’d gone crazy for believing I can be successful online. Then they would go on with their life. That’s it. That was the worst-case scenario. My life would not come crushing down. And their life would not be affected in any way.
If you are inspired to do something, but you’re letting the fear of what other people may think of you stop you, answer these questions:
What is the worst thing that can happen if I do this?
What will happen if I don’t do this?
Tip #5: Surround Yourself with Positive People
There’s a difference between false judgment and constructive criticism. False judgments are other people’s opinions of you, constructed from their view of the world. Everyone’s perception of reality is different.
You shouldn’t pay attention to those false judgments. But you do need friends who will be honest you. Friends who aren’t afraid of giving you blunt advice to help you get better. Surround yourself with positive people and ignore the rest.
Tip #6: Put Yourself Out There
When you expose yourself to the spotlight you’re afraid of, you will realize two things. Number one, people don’t actually care that much. Number two, there are people who are rooting for you.
Let’s say you put yourself out there and your worst nightmare comes true: you get criticized. It will be irrelevant. Because the people who want to see you win will far outnumber the small percent who don’t.
If you ever doubt that, read this Dr. Seuss Quote:
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”
Tip #7: Let Your Goals and Values Guide You
Everything starts with what you value. If you value honesty, you will tell the truth no matter what. Likewise, if you are committed to your goals, you will take the necessary steps no matter what.
When you focus on your values, your goals, the impact you want to make on your kids, friends, and family, and the legacy you want to leave behind, you’ll have less time to think of what others have to say about you.
Let your goals and values guide your decisions, not other people’s opinions of you.
When you find yourself worrying about what others think about you remember:
It’s not as bad as you think. They aren’t worried about you.
Own your flaws. They make you, you.
You’ll never please everyone. So there’s no reason to lose your peace over it.
Think about the worst scenario. Accept it and continue on.
Turn to friends whose opinions you do value.
Put yourself out there. Just do it. And you’ll see how little it matters to others.
Let your goals and values guide your decisions.