If you are wondering how to stop caring what people think, you are in good company.
To care about what other people think is a part of our nature. We as humans crave connection with other humans.
But caring too much about what we assume other people think of us can turn into a negative anxiety spiral that can actually be very hard to get out of.
So here are some crucial tips, so you can confidently break into your own power. It's time to become more assertive, more confident and not just a people pleaser or push-over.
How To Not CareWhat People Think
Table of Contents
Being accepted and fitting in is a large goal a lot of us have in life. That's why we try so hard to have the right job, to attract the right partner, to get married, have children, buy a home, etc.
Checking off the list of things we're “supposed” to do because that's what everyone else does.
The problem is throughout this process, we forget who we are.
We stop listening to the things we want to be doing, and eventually lose sight of what gives us purpose.
Then you end up waking up one day, wondering what you're doing with your life. And negative thinking and anxiety forms as a result.
Drawing the line between caring what others think of you and what you think of you is important.
You can't stop listening to yourself, even when you worry about what others might think.
- Go after the things you want in life, despite what others say.
Because at the end of the day, you have to be on your side. And the people who don't mind what you do will stand by your side, too.
Why Do We Care So Much About What Other People Think?
This goes back to being a child. Think about elementary or middle school.
If you wanted to hang out with the cool kids, you had to do what they liked.
Otherwise, you'd get made fun of. And as a kid, no one likes to get made fun of. It's a crucial time in your life that morphs you into who you become as an adult.
We spend 12 years in school, learning how to be a certain way.
- And if you tried really hard to fit in and be accepted by people, that most likely has bled into how you act as an adult.
Trying to break that cycle is difficult because it's going against everything you were taught growing up.
Letting go of what others think and listening to yourself is like speaking a different language. These days social media makes it even harder than before. It is all around us every minute of every day. How many times have you looked at that old friend from high school and silently judged their life, their weight or their hair? We all do. The key is to not let social media become reality and not let it drive our thoughts.
The truth is, we won't ever fully stop caring about what others think of us. And that's ok!
It's good, actually. Because that means you still care about being kind to others. How to not care what people think starts deep within yourself, and it is completely natural.
Not caring at all what people think can lead to possibly becoming heartless, so there is a fine balance.
Signs You Care Too Much
- Often assume what other people think of you. Such as “That person probably thinks I'm an idiot.”
- Try way too hard to get people to like you
- Put yourself last
- Saying no or setting boundaries feels impossible
- Always try to be one step ahead of what other people are thinking
- Get anxious if someone is upset with you
- Base your value off of what others think about you
- One wrong look from someone makes you question yourself
How Can You Stop Caring What People Think?
Letting go of what others think about you is possible. It just will require some effort on your part. And self-reflecting.
Here are some ways to work on your ability how not to care what people think
1. Stop Overgeneralizing
Overgeneralizing is when you experience something bad that sticks with you, and assuming it's going to happen every time.
- One bad experience shapes how you view every other possible future experience with the same scenario.
Let's say when you were a kid you got made fun of for having a big nose.
So, whenever someone is talking to you, and you catch them looking at you weird, you immediately think it's because of your big nose.
When in reality, it could be a number of reasons. Possibly just because the person is contemplating how to respond to what you said.
When you care too much about what others think, overgeneralizing can trigger anxiety.
It can also prevent you from putting yourself in situations that might require someone noticing your nose.
Overgeneralizing is all made up in your head. And giving power to those thoughts will make it feel like you're not good enough.
- Try challenging the thoughts in your head. Stop assuming what other people are thinking.
Most of the time, people don't notice the things you think they do. You're just hyper-aware of it because it did happen before. And even if you do have a big nose, what's so wrong about it?
You have to continue to ask yourself these questions, and challenge the negative thoughts in your head.
This will allow you to reflect on yourself, instead of focusing so much on what others think.
2. Remember Everyone Feels the Same as You
If you can take a step back and look around you, you'll notice that everyone has their own insecurities.
The ones they can't bear when someone points out. No matter who it is, or how old they are. People feel the same as you. Never ever think you are alone, trust me you are not.
So, when you're sitting there talking to someone, just remember that they are most likely more worried about what you think of them. Treat them how you would like to be treated. Listen before you judge, in fact don't judge at all.
They are not judging you.
Unless you are doing something that is offensive or hurtful, most people don't judge like that. They are way too focused on themselves to even care if you have a big nose. a Lot of people might actually love your nose.
3. Work on Finding Yourself
When you're so focused on everyone else's opinions of you, you aren't listening to the most important person:Yourself.
The voices in your head can get insanely loud sometimes, and they can make you doubt yourself.
From your own inner critic, to assuming what other people are thinking, it's hard to quiet the noise and hear what you have to say.
So try to focus on yourself more. Write down the things you love about yourself, and what you really enjoy doing.
Spend some time alone, away from the outside noise. This might mean you have to start from scratch. Losing yourself is a common thing that happens in life.
Because we do the things we think we should do, not what we want to do.
If you can instead start focusing on what you enjoy, you will stop caring about what other people think. Because you'll be having fun and enjoying life, and you won't want those negative thoughts to ruin it.
4. Let Go of Trying To Please Everyone
Pleasing people and perfectionism are as real as a unicorn. So think that when you are trying to do these things, you might as well be trying to find a unicorn.
Don't be afraid of losing people. Be afraid of losing yourself by trying to please everyone around you.
If you can learn this sooner in life, you will be one step ahead of most people in the world.
We are all unique, and you were made as who you are right now for a reason. If we were all supposed to be the same, we'd all look exactly the same.
Embrace the fact that you are who you are. And let go of trying to please other people.
Because the people who love you and support you don't need that. Being yourself is all they could ever want.
The people who ask you to change are the ones you might want to reconsider being around.
Because it's impossible. And when you place your value off of what others think of you, you lose complete sight of the value you already hold.
5. Stop Making up Stories in Your Head
Nothing ruins confidence more than assuming everything. Unless you can get the hard cold facts, don't believe everything your brain is telling you.
We tell ourselves things based off past experiences, people's body language, and how we view ourselves.
Mix all three of these together and you have a toxic mindset.
You have to fight off those evil thoughts that form in your head. If someone was pissed at you for no reason, that's on them.
You can self-reflect and double-check you didn't do anything wrong, and then you have to let it go.
- Get rid of negative people who put those thoughts into your head.
- Replace the made-up stories with real ones.
How To Stop Caring What People Think – Conclusion
It can be hard to learn how to not care what people think. But if you practice these tips, your self-confidence will grow overtime. With practice, you won't worry about what anyone is thinking about you, and you can believe in yourself, uninterrupted. Never stop believing in the magic of you. Although it might not always feel like it, you might be someone else's hero, and they might look up to you. Start to worry more about what you think of yourself than what other people think of you.
Remind yourself that you are good enough, you are a kind person, you give love and receive love, and you deserve anything you want in this world.
Then let the rest of those stories go. Once you can learn to do all of these things, you will let go of caring about what other's think of you.
Because how you think of yourself will matter way more. For more on this, read 12 signs you're doing better than you think you are.