Don’t waste a moment of your precious life worrying about what other people think of you. No good can come of people’s approval of you.
The truth is that you’ll waste far more energy imagining what people think of you than those people will ever invest in it themselves. Most people are far too preoccupied with their own lives to devote considerable attention to what you’re doing. While you’re worrying about what they think of you, they’re worrying about what you think of them. Just worrying your lives away…
Instead of being concerned with what people think, become concerned with what you think of yourself. Your opinion of yourself matters far more than the opinions of others, no matter how wise, intelligent, or well-meaning you think they are.
Realize that other people’s opinions of you are theirs alone and have very little to do with you. No one else really knows what you’re capable of. When you allow others to have their reaction without taking ownership of it yourself, you empower yourself.
Don’t fear that you’ll turn into some kind of inconsiderate, anti-social jerk if you stop being concerned with what others think of you. Even as you meet with resistance from others, you’ll be serving as a role model to help them overcome their own fears.
In all honesty which is more important to you: the approval of others, or your own happiness?
If you aren’t happy, you don’t approve of yourself, and hence no one can approve of you anyway. They will recognize plainly that your priorities have produced a failure of your life. If you place approval above your own happiness, you ultimately end up with neither. You’ll be unhappy, and you cannot expect anyone to truly approve of you for that. Whatever approval you do receive will be as fake as the contentment you pretend to harbor.
The approval of others is inconsequential, but if you successfully create a happy life for yourself, you will have your own self-approval, and that is worth something.