One of the biggest things that can prevent people from taking action on the things they want to do, or from exposing their authentic selves and their true dreams and desires to the world is the fear of what other people think about them. This fear can be crippling and it’s really valuable and important to figure out how to get over it. The world can benefit immensely from having more and more people release their barriers of defensiveness, and really present themselves in their full truth and authenticity. I am speaking for myself as well.
What I feel inspired to talk about tonight is that sometimes when we intend to act in a way where we ‘don’t care about what other people think about us’ it can result in a sort of rebellion against the judgement and criticism from others. When we’re acting in a way where we’re rebelling against criticism we’re still actually caring what other people think about us, because we’re giving their thoughts power by reacting to them.
In no way do I intend to put this rebellion down, in fact I think that it can be empowering in certain situations and to certain degrees; however, I perceive a distinction between this kind of rebellious state of being where you’re reacting to someone, and actually truly not caring what people think about you. I’d also say that truly not caring what people think about you can be extremely empowering and it is the natural consequence of having one hugely powerful thing:
When we have a purpose in our lives that is bigger than ourselves and inspires us to our very cores, then we can find the courage to do anything, and there isn’t even time or space in our minds to care what other people think about us.
For example, when a woman is having a baby all of a sudden it doesn’t really matter very much that she is naked in front of a bunch of people, because she’s doing something enormously important and powerful by bringing LIFE into the world. Because of that gigantic purpose there’s no space in her mind to care about what other people think about her. All of her focus is required to give birth.
Since I haven’t given birth, at least in this lifetime, the closest I can relate to this is when I had open heart surgery. I had to expose my body to strangers and trust that I would be taken care of, and I did trust that I would be OK because at that time it was a spiritual and physical necessity that all I projected was love and all I felt was safety. I chose those feelings and it took all of my power and focus to achieve them. There was no room in my mind to care what anybody else was thinking, because if I did I wouldn’t have had the strength to get through it without completely freaking out. I did an amazing job!
More generally speaking, when you believe you can achieve something really BIG that inspires you and feels like it is aligned with what you’re here to do, all of the sudden people’s thoughts about you and against you become irrelevant. There’s just literally no time to care. This is especially true and helpful when your purpose involves providing service to others in some way, and when you recognize the immense value of what it is you want to do. Recognizing your value and getting excited about it can definitely help to cultivate this deep and motivating sense of purpose.
So, to get back to the title of this post, one of the best ways to truly get over the fear of what other people think of you is to cultivate a deep internal sense of purpose and realize that you can achieve it. For “whatever the mind of man can conceive and bring itself to believe, it can achieve”. ~Napolean Hill. If you believe you can truly do something that lights you up inside and sends chills of excitement through your being when you think about it, then there will be no stopping you.
I’m currently reading the book As A Man Thinketh by James Allen and this quote feels very much in line with this discussion:
“They who have no central purpose in their life fall an easy prey to petty worries, fears, troubles, and self-pitying … We should conceive of a legitimate purpose in our heart and set out to accomplish it. We should make this purpose the centralizing point of our thoughts.”
I’d love to hear other examples where there was a purpose that compelled you to do things you normally would have been too scared to do. Please free to share your thoughts and experiences in the comments below. You have the power to spread big waves of inspiration through your examples, and I so appreciate reading your comments.