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It Doesn’t Matter

Posted on August 31 2015

I recently overheard an intimate conversation between two young ladies at a coffee shop that I frequent. It was about a major life decision that one of them had just made. I listened as the girl behind me fumbled her way through the many reasons why this decision was the best thing for her. Her friend didn’t say much but I could sense the tension and judgment in the air. I’m guessing the girl behind me sensed it too because the explanations, like verbal diarrhea, just kept coming. I felt bad for her. I wanted to reach over, squeeze her hand and tell her that it didn’t matter. 

“It doesn’t matter”. I find myself repeating this a lot. I’ll keep repeating it until I completely break free of every need to explain myself to others. It’s not an easy task but it has gotten easier. 

“When you come right down to it, opinions are the most superficial things about anyone.” Jorge Luis Borgas

I learned at a very young age that it takes a certain kind of bravery to stop caring about what others think of you. I learned later in life that it takes the same amount of bravery to stop the constant need to explain your journey and your decisions to others. For every decision you make and every supporter you gain, there are detractors and naysayers telling you that they would have done things differently.

“Your opinion of me is none of my business.” Judy Ford

You can’t ever stop someone from forming opinions about you. Quite frankly, it’s exhausting trying to mold the way people see you. It’s okay if people don’t like you; it’s okay if people don’t agree with your decisions; it’s also okay if people don’t believe in your dreams. We focus so much on the destination instead of the journey that we become paralyzed at the prospect of making the wrong move. We let other people’s voices into our heads and we soak ourselves in their judgments and opinions. In the end, we find ourselves answering to everyone else but ourselves. What a sad way to live.

Not caring what others think of you takes a certain kind of bravery indeed. It is not something that comes naturally to most of us but it is a skill that we can all cultivate. What I find is that every time I exercise this skill, I feel lighter; freer. I feel like myself. Isn’t that all we really want? 

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