[Loud fail buzzer…. Nope.]
I never looked forward to Jan. 1 as a kid—instead, I got pumped about the possibility of a fresh start every September on the first day of school.
I’d get SO pumped because SURELY summer vacation would clear the slate, and all the kids would just conveniently FORGET they hated my guts.
Every summer vacation I’d strategize about HOW I could get other kids to LIKE ME…..
SUMMER BEFORE 6TH GRADE
THIS YEAR I’m just going to be NICE. I’m going to give lots of compliments and I’m going to be really NICE and kids are going to like me this year!! (Annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd cue Erin’s backpack getting hurled into the garbage can by the end of week 1….
SUMMER BEFORE 7TH GRADE
I’m upping the bar this year. This year I’m using my allowance to buy candy and am gonna just GIVE it away every day!!! If I give other kids candy all the time THEY WILL SURELY LIKE ME. (Annnnnnnnnnnd cue getting girl-slapped in front of everyone at recess by Heidi for I have no idea why but damn I remember she looked really angry at me…….
SUMMER BEFORE 8TH GRADE
Gonna dress rad this year. Gonna get mom to help me this year with new back-to-school clothes and shoes and a sweet backpack. OBVIOUSLY this silver bolo tie and these spandex shorts with pink stripes will PROVE I’m cool. (Annnnnnnnnnnd cue a circle of kids surrounding me yelling FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT as I get threatened by the much-older girl who said I “touched her titty” while putting books into my locker…….)
“HOW THE HECK CAN I GET EVERYONE TO JUST LIKE ME????”
^^^ THESE are the kinds of thoughts a kid has when she finds *herself* unacceptable.
See, when we’re not okay with ourselves, we desperately seek validation from others.
Many of us end up forming senses of self-worth based on what OTHERS say about us + based on how OTHERS judge us.
This may make for entertaining mini-stories of my youth…
…but it’s NOT entertaining when we carry the need for approval into our adulthood (in fact, it makes for constant, draining struggles and stress).
Many of my clients have unknowingly done exactly that.
I watch successful entrepreneurs make business and life decisions BASED HEAVILY upon how much they think others will LIKE them.
❇️ “I won’t post my wins to social media because people will think I’m bragging.” (LEFT UNSAID: “Because then they might not think well of me/like me.”)
❇️ “I don’t ever tell my friends about my business failures, I don’t want them to know.” (LEFT UNSAID: “Because then they might not think highly of me/like me.”)
❇️ “I don’t ever speak my mind. At home. At work. With my family. I keep my lips zipped.” (LEFT UNSAID: “Because if I disagree, they may stop liking me….”)
❇️ “I don’t play golf with the guys. They’d see how awful I am at sports, so I just don’t go.” (LEFT UNSAID: “Because if they see I’m no good, they won’t approve of me/like me anymore.”)
^^^ Can you see how the need for approval impacts adults’ behaviors, thoughts, and emotions ALL THE TIME?
I see it costing some of my clients tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.
I see it costing them hours of time each week.
Sometimes, their happiness (oh, the irony of staying unhappy so that you can be Liked by others in hopes of being happy).
We crave ongoing approval from others IF
we don’t find ourselves acceptable.
If we DID accept ourselves for who we were, we wouldn’t be DRIVEN to get others to tell us we’re okay. We wouldn’t crave the compliments and the confirmations from our friends and family that we’re alright.
As long as you judge your self-worth and how acceptable you are as a human being based on what others think of you…
YOU WILL LOSE.
Your self-worth will literally be contingent upon the moods, beliefs, biases, upbringings, mental states, whims, evolving opinions, amounts of sleep, past experiences, etc. of other people at the time they judge you.
is getting to a place where
YOU DON’T GIVE A FUCK
how others are judging you as a person
because you’re finally,
okay with who you are.
(Warts and all, as they say.)
^^^ THAT is the ultimate goal.
^^^ THAT is power beyond belief.
^^^ Getting to THAT is the point with MindFix where clients say “OH MY GOD IT’S LIKE I CAN ACTUALLY START LIVING NOW.”
Yet THAT (being okay with myself) is something I never really hear people aspiring toward in their annual resolutions and goal-setting.
Instead, they set goals that have them running around trying to become a version of someone that they desperately hope will be APPROVED OF by others.
They’ve got it a bit backwards, eh
This year as you get pumped up by visions of a NEW YOU, take a moment to explore something.
Ask yourself whether what you’re aiming for this year is in the hopes that you’ll garner attention and approval from OTHERS…. (aka middle school Erin……)
…or if you’re aspiring to become the type of human YOU want to become—REGARDLESS of what others will think of you.
If NOT the latter:
How much longer are you going to give up on being YOU by choosing to live your life based on the ever-changing thoughts and opinions and judgements of those around you?
Happy New Year my friends.
(That girl you SO would have picked on in middle school even though you won’t admit it)
When you're sick and tired of getting in your own way, and you know you're capable of SO much more, it's time to talk to us.