What Other People Think Of You Is None Of Your Business
By: Dr. Peggy Malone
“What other people think of you is none of your business. If you start to make it your business, you’ll be offended for the rest of your life.” – Deepak Chopra
I had a client this week who confided in me that she feels ‘less than’ in certain situations.
She is getting ready for a big race that many people will never even consider in this lifetime… a Half Ironman Triathlon.
She mentioned that when she goes to these types of events, she feels that if she isn’t performing to the same level or going as fast as everyone around her that it makes her feel as though she’s an imposter.
She told me that she asks herself: “What am I even doing here?”
The first thing that I told her is:
What other people think of you is none of your business.
She has made a huge commitment over the last 4 months to arrange her schedule to swim, bike, run or cross train up to 6 times per week. She has all but completed the training (the hardest part). She is feeling good when doing her long workouts. She feels mentally ready to get to the finish line upright and smiling and still these doubts and fears are invading her mind.
From my viewpoint, she is a superstar… a woman on a mission to complete a goal that she set for herself…who has taken the necessary steps to get to the finish line of the goal. That, in and of itself, is amazing!!
Less than 10 percent of people go after their dreams in this way and waaaaaayyyyy less than 10 percent of people will ever toe the starting line of a race like the one she will be doing in a couple of weeks.
So why the feelings of ‘less than’?
Because she is comparing herself and her dreams to what she sees in someone else. She assumes that they will think less of her if she can’t do it in the same time or in the same way that they can.
She is listening to the voices of fear and doubt that have gotten a bit louder the closer she gets to the finish line of this goal.
This idea applies to lots of areas in life as we go after something we have been dreaming about or working toward.
There are always going to be people that think differently than you; that don’t agree with your ideas or your beliefs or where you are going with your dreams.
If you allow yourself to listen to or be influenced by other people’s negativity, your confidence may melt into uncertainty and you will begin to question your own worth.
Worrying about what other people think is not empowering or constructive and it destroys your focus on where you are going!
Accepting that there are always going to be people who do not resonate with you will take a huge weight off your shoulders and allow you to stay focused on your own path.
YOU and only YOU know your situation, your dreams, your goals and what is happening for you. Nobody other than you knows what is best for you as you head toward your dreams. Believe that!
The next time you catch yourself thinking about what someone else is thinking about you… remind yourself:
It is none of my business.
Say it out loud if you have to.
Focus on doing your best with the tools that you have in the moment rather than focusing on if others think you are good enough.
This whole idea of worrying about what other people think is something that I’m not immune to. I’m sure that there are people out there who don’t like my appearance or my behavior or my ideas or my opinions or how I choose to live my life. There is part of me (the people pleaser from way back ) who feels sad and frustrated when I think about this fact.
But as it turns out…
It’s none of my business.
Dr. Peggy Malone is a Chiropractor and an Athlete who helps other athletes to overcome injury and get back to their sport. Her weekly Television Series 'Living Well" inspires people from all walks of life to take control of their health to be as happy and as healthy as they can be.
A former varsity Basketball and Rugby player, she has since entered the world of endurance athletics where she has completed 2 Ironman Triathlons, 3 Marathons, several Half Marathons and many other Triathlons, Road Races and Off-Road Adventure races of varying distances.
Her own athletic endeavors and injuries have given her valuable insight into working with athletes in her practice for both the care of injuries as well as for the improvement of athletic performance.