Caring excessively about what others think will destroy your life, like it did mine!

In these 19 years that I have lived, I have cared way too much about what people have thought about me. This excessive self consciousness has consequently destroyed my life! Okay fine I’m being a tad dramatic. However, caring about what people have thought about me in the past has really set me back in many ways. For instance, starting this blog.

Writing is something I’ve always loved. It is a way I can express many of my deepest fears, worries, desires and passions. But unfortunately due to my lack of confidence and the reliance on the opinions of others I have hindered my own personal growth as a writer and a creative. So I thought I’d finally have a blog that wasn’t anonymous, that I could share with the people who don’t think blogs are too dated…

I have given so much power to others – especially the power to control the way I view myself- which is honestly so frustrating and a hard cycle to get out of. I have relied on others to tell me what to do and what to be. That has ultimately made me forget the person I once was and obstructed the person I could’ve been.

So when did this dependency on others begin you may ask? In secondary school. This is where my prepubescent, oblivious self learnt that people actually cared about your appearance and who you were. I realised a lot of people started questioning my character and everything I did seemed like it was examined under a microscope. I was trapped under a bell jar. Feeling like subject of everyone’s experiment, I felt like my every move was judged and interrogated by others. Thus I became slightly paranoid and very self conscious. I remember this boy in year seven who told me that I was “pretty but I’d be way more prettier if I lost a few pounds and did my eyebrows”, I had a thick fluffy unibrow. I never had a problem with my eyebrows before that, I didn’t even know what a mirror was let alone a unibrow. Heck, did I even need deodorant in the early days of year seven?! I don’t think he knew that this comment would scar me as much as it did. But it really did, a few weeks later after he had uttered those words to me…guess what I did. I begged my mum to get my eyebrows “fixed” and so we went to get them done. Threading. It was not fun and very painful. I even started carrying a mirror everywhere I went and going to the bathroom after every lesson became a habit. Yeah you guessed it, I was obsessed with the way I looked. How everyone else saw me was how I saw myself. That was the first of many times I let someone’s opinions or comments drive my actions. Even now till this day I sometimes look in the mirror and probe my appearance the same way he and others have done to me.

Secondary school was just completely different to how things were like in primary school. Before secondary, I was so sociable and vivacious, I didn’t care about what anyone thought about me. I was just a chubby carefree kid. But secondary school kind of dulled that down and I was left with an almost empty shell of the person I once was. I consider allowing people to dictate the way I saw myself, to be one of the greatest mistakes of my life. I have made many more mistakes after that but those stories can be told another day.

So how did I change all of this? Well in year 11 I had a mini mental breakdown and ultimately I just didn’t know who I was and where I was going in life. That’s when I realised something had to change. Like they say first step to recovery is acceptance. I had to accept that there was something wrong with how I allowed others to control my self perception. I found new interests. Instead of focusing on looking a certain way for other people I looked good for me and started wearing clothes I liked. I started reading more, I wrote more and I started doing street photography.

But let’s be honest I am still lost and I am most definitely not the most confident person in the world. But one thing I will say is I am getting there. I will get there one day!

I am not perfect and I do still tend to dip in and out of my old habits. Old habits do die hard… very hard. Like SO hard. But creating this blog is one of my first steps to murdering that bastard of a habit. I don’t care what people say about this blog I just want to share my experiences and thoughts and opinions. So if you can relate then great we can be on this journey together.

Long story short… Don’t care about what people think about you because you won’t be you anymore. And there’s nothing worse than not knowing who the hell you are. Caring about what people think about me is still something I struggle with till this day however it’s something I can and will overcome. You can too! Something I’ve learnt is that the worth of yourself or your work should never be placed in the hands of others. As a creative, it is yours to have full dominion over. Don’t let anyone else define who YOU are or your work!

Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk.

A.H

Published by iamdreaway

Lets talk about the important things!!!

4 thoughts on “Caring excessively about what others think will destroy your life, like it did mine!

  1. You are wise beyond your years, my friend. I took me 30 years to truly figure out who I am. I too listened to other people’s opinions and let them dictate my life. The truth is, my life is not theirs to live, and you’re right. It doesn’t matter what anyone thinks. Keep on being you, and never stop writing!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This was a great encouragement for me ✊🏿 ! as I myself sometimes have tendencies to overthink and be cautious of the opinions of others but you gotta remind yourself the opinions of others are empty and never hold any value unless you give their opinion value. Sometimes you gotta get out the many lies in your head and step into reality and hold on to what’s true.

    Here’s some quotes of wisdom from the gospel that I hope helps :

    “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
    ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:6-7‬ ‭ESV‬‬

    “”Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?”
    ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:25‬ ‭ESV‬‬

    “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?”
    ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:26-27‬ ‭ESV‬‬

    “”Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
    ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:34‬ ‭ESV‬‬

    Stay blessed, this blogpost was inspiring !

    Liked by 1 person

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