Episode 65 | (00:00):
Hey there, friend. Are you tired of worrying about what they think? I have a suggestion. Why don't we just lose them? Why don't we just kick them to the curb? And that's what we're going to be talking about in this episode.
I'm going to leave you with a few very simple questions so you can start evaluating just how much they are affecting you, because most of us are walking around without even a clue that we're doing this.
And by midlife, a lot of this has become more of a habit than anything else. Once you start evaluating how much they are affecting you, then you can do something about it.
Because without this awareness, you're just going to keep moving forward on the same path. So let's get going. You're ready to get this moving? Let's do it!
Hey there, Easy Ager. If you're not already on the Insider's list, go to TheEasyAgingShow.com right after this episode and sign up today.
Now we're going to be talking about an insidious little thing that lives in everyone's head, but it's something we don't talk about very often.
And if you're not careful, if you're not paying attention and aware of what's going on in your thoughts, this little bitty thing can turn into a big thing and actually start affecting your behavior, your decision making, and what you think about all day long.
This little thing is they. We're talking about they, them, those people who make you drive yourself crazy when you're worried about what they think of you when you're trying to please them.
They are the ones you grew up thinking about when you were deciding what to wear to class. They are the people who dated the most popular boys, and they are the people you wanted to be like when you were younger.
Once you graduated, they became the Joneses that you worked so hard to keep up with when you started your career. They are the ones who always seem to get the promotion in the corner office with a nice view.
They are the families whose kids seem to always get straight As and make the sports teams and excel at just about anything they try. They have influenced pretty much every aspect of your life since the moment you understood how the world worked.
But let me ask you a question about this very powerful group: Who the heck are they and why do we care so much about what they think?
We have all spent way too much time thinking about them, giving them power, letting them affect so much of our behavior and our thoughts and the way we see ourselves.
I thought it would be kind of fun to ask the Google a question like "who cares what they think quotes." And I was surprised there were so many quotes and memes out there about they, about those people who influence us so thoroughly and completely, generally without us even knowing.
So here are a few samples. "Care about what other people think, and you will always be their prisoner." (Lao Tzu)
"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life." (Steve Jobs)
And then my favorite, by one of my very favorite authors in the world, "Be who you are and say what you feel. Because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." (Dr. Seuss)
Note: When I started reading this last one, I thought it was going to rhyme. I don't know why, that's just where I went. ;)
So "Be who you are and say what you feel. Because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind." That's some wisdom that we can all learn from, right?
Even though I hate to admit it, y'all, I wasted a lot of time and energy worrying about them. I didn't want to make a mistake. I didn't want to be wrong. I was so scared of being judged by them.
I was living so fearfully. And let me tell you, living with fear is not living. It's simply existing, and it is absolutely no way to go through life.
This happened when I was much younger so I started praying about this fear, and God started putting it to rest. He helped me release all those fears and helped me realize that He was so much bigger than any fear I could ever have.
Because this happened in my 20s, I was so blessed to stop worrying so much about what they thought at a fairly young age. This allowed me to go on to have some incredible life adventures that I previously wouldn't have even considered...
Because I would've been so scared and so concerned about what they thought. "What are people going to think about me if I make that decision?"
These adventures were so freeing, and it was so delightful and so refreshing just to be me. To speak my truth, to follow my heart, to walk the path that God had laid out before me, unconventional as it was.
Am I completely cured of this affliction, of worrying about them and what they think? Nope. Every now and then it rears its ugly head, and that's just normal. That's just the way we were made.
But I catch myself more quickly these days, so it doesn't move into that same overwhelming level of concern that I had when I was younger. I'm going to leave you with some questions to think about and to figure out if maybe you are living for them and what they think, like I did.
You may want to grab a notebook to write some of this down. There are six questions:
Do you feel like people judge you? What expectations do you think people have of you? Do they expect you to succeed or to fail? Are you living the life you want? Are you living fully and authentically? Are you stepping into every opportunity with boldness and enthusiasm?
These are just a few questions to get your mind going as you start thinking, "What do I think of they? What do I think of them?"
You may have to go through this a few times to start getting deeper and deeper and deeper but as you do this, try to narrow down who the major players are.
More than likely, it's not a lot of people. It's not "everybody" like you may have been thinking. It's going to be one or two people in your life who have influenced your thinking dramatically.
It may be a parent who has passed away. It may be a sibling who teased you or judged you when you were growing up, but now you're getting along fine. You may have a great relationship but for some reason, you held onto that judgment.
Easy Ager, it's time to let go of that. Let go of all of it. Let go of the judgments and even let go of the people if you need to. Start focusing on the people who support you, the people who lift you up, who love and respect you.
These are the encouraging people in your life who get excited for you as you step into new opportunities and as you try new things. Find the good and focus on that. Invest your time and energy into these people.
They're going to be thrilled, and these folks could become some of your most important relationships in midlife and beyond. Because they're the ones who don't mind you being yourself in front of them.
Just like Dr. Seuss says, "Be who you are and say what you feel. Because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." Oh, Dr. Seuss — so much wisdom from this man!
That's it for today. Once again, if you're not an Easy Aging® Insider, go to TheEasyAgingShow.com right now and sign up. I'll see you in the next episode and until then, peace, love and blessings to you and yours. Take care. Bye-bye!