Be honest, how many times have you let other people's opinions steer your life in one direction or another?
Tens of times? Hundreds of times? Thousands of times?
How would your life look different right now had you followed your own heart, your own intuition, that internal compass that pulls you towards decisions that you may not even understand in the moment?
Would you be in a different job? A different relationship? A different state?
Would you have started that blog, or that Etsy shop, or that online course?
Would you be happier, more at peace, more fulfilled?
You'll never know, really. And it's a fruitless effort living in the land of 'what ifs'. But while you don't have any control over past you, you have every bit of control over the choices you make from here on out. You have every ability to start strengthening your armor against the judgements of others so you can finally, freely live life on your terms.
Imagine how incredible it would feel if you could go out with friends and order a salad without fear of people poking and prodding at you for being on a diet?
Or if you could regularly promote your incredible coaching program on Instagram without feeling like people were going to hate you for being so 'salesy.'
Or if you could go back to the job you love without worrying about your mother-in-law laying on the mom guilt.
All of this is within your reach.
Now yes, we're talking about rewiring the brain here. We're talking about breaking a multigenerational habit of deferring to others before we make decisions. We're talking about overriding our intrinsic, survival mechanistic brain that tells us if we don't fit in, we'll be separated from the pack and eaten by a lion. We're talking about breaking down a massive barricade of fear and doubt to start living outside of our comfort zone and into our highest potential.
How the heck do we do that?
With massive levels of self awareness and repetition.
Trust me, you are talking to a recovering people-pleaser who never wanted to even assert what I wanted for dinner for fear of choosing something that my partner wouldn't like. If I can get to a place of shamelessly going for what I want, without feeling shackled by what others might think, anyone can.
So here's your mission, should you choose to accept it: read these 5 perspective shifts, and then write the headlines that resonate most with you where you'll see them every day. Every day? Every day.
You could write them as a quote in a pretty font and hang it in a frame, you could write it on your bathroom mirror, or my favorite is you can put it as a reminder in your phone to go off through out the day so when you find yourself falling back into old mental patterns, you always have something to remind you to snap out of it.
This is one of my favorite ways of dealing with any kind of fear. Our fears feel so huge and suffocating because we let them become bigger than reality.
But when we bring them back down to earth we realize how insignificant they really are. So, break down what will actually play out if your fear does come true. And consistently ask yourself if the outcome you picture is actually true for you. Keep breaking it down until the shadow that looks like a monster turns into the shadow of a mop bucket that it really is.
-What am I afraid of?
-If my business idea doesn't work, I'll disappoint my parents and people will see I'm just a big failure.
-Is that true? If it is, then what?
-I mean, my parents will love me no matter what so I guess not entirely. But, if they are disappointed, I'll feel really bad and will have to go back to my old job.
-I'll be stuck in a job I hate forever because I clearly couldn't cut it as a business owner.
-Is that true?
-I mean, I guess not necessarily. I could always try again, come at it from a different angle.
-Right. And you're already in a job you hate right?
-So you're already living your worst case scenario, isn't it worth it to at least try?
-Ok yeah, I guess you're right.
You already looked back at how different your life would look right now had you not given into your fear of judgement. Do this with foresight.
With every choice you make you're either moving towards your best life or towards someone else's idea of your best life. Ask yourself consistently, is their opinion helping push you towards your greatness, or are they costing you your dreams.
Bask in the glory that no matter what you do, you will be judged. It is an absolute fact of life that we have zero control over. This is incredible freeing because if you're going to be judged either way, you have nothing to lose by following your desires.
Think about it this way, let's say you take the step of starting a blog that documents your personal development journey. Here are some of the responses you might get:
Person A: How cool and inspiring! That makes me want to start my blog! Thank you for being such a great role model for me!
Person B: How conceited is that. No one cares about your life. You're such a narcissist.
Person C: Oh man, I feel like your message compliments mine really well. You'd be a great partner to work with on this project I have!
One action on your part, and you've been labeled with 3 different identities: a role model, a narcissist, and a potential business partner. Which is true? Whichever one you believe, I suppose.
Not knowing you, I could look at those 3 opinions and I wouldn't be able to pinpoint a single absolute truth about you. But I could pinpoint an absolute truth or 2 about the people divvying out their opinions.
Take heed in the fact that everyone else is just as in their head about what others think as you are. You may think that everything you do is drawing major conversation and major judgement, but without sounding too flippant, no one is thinking about you that much.
And honestly, our brains have a limited capacity for information. So even when people do judge you, it's usually fleeting. Our brain quickly discards that information to bring back focus to the things that have a greater impact on our life.
So there you have it, 5 mental flips to logic your way out of the fear of judgement so you can move freely towards the vision you have for your life.
Remember, one of people's biggest regrets at their death bed (I know, how morbid), is living too much of their life according to other people's opinions. It's not too late to turn the tide.
What are you going to do today in fearless pursuit of your ideal future? Comment below, I want to know!