How to stop worrying about what others think
Fretting about what others think is something that many people do – perhaps it is something you do. Excessive worrying can really have a negative effect on your well-being, it can stop you doing things you want to do or enjoying life to the full. Sadly, this time-consuming, energy-sapping activity serves no-one, certainly not you.
The chances are that the people who you are worrying about are not only oblivious to your concerns but are not thinking about you at all. This doesn’t mean that you’re not important, just that most people are busy thinking about their own lives (or worries).
In the event that they are thinking about you, how do you know what they are thinking? The truth is that you don’t. They may be thinking something very complimentary, but the likelihood is that you have not considered this as an option. Unfortunately, more people’s default setting tends to be negative than positive. How many friends or colleagues have you heard say ‘I bet she thinks I look good in this dress’ or ‘he’s probably thinking I’m so good at my job, I ought to be promoted’.
Of course, there are people who are mean and critical, but this says more about how they feel about themselves than you. If you know someone who is happy and confident, I’m pretty sure they are not bitchy or critical of others. Those who are unhappy, insecure or who have low self-esteem may be judgemental of or unkind to others in an attempt to feel better about themselves.
How they think, feel or behave is out of your control and unless they are a very close friend or family member, their issues are not your concern. It’s good to get out of the destructive habit of second-guessing what others are thinking; you’ll never know and you don’t need to. It’s better to put any worries about others aside and focus on what you want or need to do; your job is to take care of you. Live your life in a way that is comfortable and right for you and is congruent with your values. The only person who needs to approve of you is you!
If you do find yourself worrying about other’s opinions, take a pause. Ask yourself if you have any evidence that they are thinking (or saying) something negative. If they seem distant, quiet or ‘off’ with you, ask yourself if there are any other reasons that they may be behaving in this way; explore the options as there could be many other reasons for their behaviour. If they have been unkind, remind yourself that this is due to their ‘stuff’ and is nothing to do with you.
It isn’t bad to give consideration to what others think, especially those who are close or dear to you, but if you are constantly worrying about what others think of you or your actions, you could seek the help of a hypnotherapist. Hypnosis is a very pleasant experience and with the help of a qualified therapist, it is possible to make powerful changes in how you think and feel. So, if you’d like to worry less, feel more relaxed and improve your self-esteem, why not give hypnotherapy a try.
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About Lorraine Mcreight
Lorraine McReight is an award-winning hypnotherapist with a therapy centre in Wimbledon. She is principal of London Hypnotherapy Academy & is editor of the professional journal, Hypnoversity. Lorraine is Development Director of the NCH (National Council for Hypnotherapy) & a fellow of the APHP (Association for Professional Hypnosis & Psychotherapy)