For all the people pleasers

I am a people pleaser.

I care a lot about what people think of me, and other’s opinions shape my perceptions of my life. Almost all of my fears and hesitations stem from the questions “What will people think of me? What do people say about me when I’m not around?” (Which is kind of a crazy thought because I surround myself with lovely, quality people.)

But I recently discovered a little secret….

People don't think about you as much as you think they do

People don’t think about you as much as you think they do.

Perhaps this statement is crushingly depressing, but I find it liberating. While my world may revolve around me, the rest of the world does not. All of the time I spend wondering what people may think of me is wasted time. Because no one thinks about me half as much as I think they do.

Nevertheless, putting yourself out there is scary. Making friends is hard. Trying something new is really intimidating and the fear of failure is strong. I am even afraid of blogging sometimes, fearing who is reading and what they may think about my life and thoughts.

But the older I get, the more I realize two things:

  1. People are not as intimidating as they initially perceive to be, because…
  2. Everyone else is just as insecure as you are.

The more people I meet and the more friends I make, I realize that we are all the same at our core. We all struggle with doubt and worry and fears.

And yet, we are all so different and have something unique to offer each other. Instead of fearing each other’s opinions, we should be celebrating our uniqueness and each other’s gifts and skills.

I think about some of the women I admire and seem so confident in their passions; Lara Casey comes to mind. I love that she owns who she is and is true to herself. But I bet there was a time when she was at a crossroads and had to leap into the unknown. I am sure she had many hesitations, wondering what people would think. But the truth is, who doesn’t like this lady? She is amazing and beautiful and true to her calling.

That’s the kind of person I want to be. Brave and kind and confident.

So to all my fellow people pleasers, what are hesitating from doing, for fear of people’s opinions? 

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  • Toni

    being true to myself is my hesitation…I don’t do half the things I want to do for fear of what people may say or think…thanks for this post

  • Reynoldswrapper

    Loved the article! I too am a people pleaser, but I also tend to have somewhat controversial opinions. So I guess I relate to this insofar as I am always afraid that I may offend someone I care about, or may do damage to my personal and professional reputation for speaking my mind. But when I finally came to grips with the fact that it is OK if I am not liked by everyone, I found it easier to be myself. And I realized something – even though people disagree with some of my views and ethics, it hasn’t kept most of them from continuing to be my friend. People respect knowing that you are being genuine more than they would if they think tou are jist telling them what they want to hear.

  • Dorothy Clement

    Great thoughts Ginna! It’s great to see you pondering and coming to these conclusions before you are 30! Freedom is at your doorstep!

  • Kerrie Williams

    the struggle is real! I deal with this constantly. Great words of wisdom!