To an extent, it’s important to think of others. Being cognizant and considerate of their feelings and how your actions may affect them is a good quality to have. But living your life based on what others might think of you will only hold you back from doing what makes you happy and whole.
“You’re abandoning yourself to the perceived needs of another,” explains health and confidence expert Rhona Clews, a UK-based clinical psychologist. “Any time we do this, it creates internal anguish because we’re actually placing someone else ahead of ourselves.” She notes that it’s not a selfless act, but rather an indirect strategy for us to get our own needs met — specifically our need to be accepted.
This can get us into a messy place. “Love for ourselves becomes conditional rather than unconditional. Rather than believing simply, ‘I’m lovable because I’m a human being,’ we think we have to earn it or prove it,” she adds.
Here are some signs you may be wasting too much energy focusing on what other people think.
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