Ohhh yeah, this one’s a toughie, so strap in.
I used to be OBSESSED with everyone liking me. And not making anyone upset. Everyone had to like me at all times, and think I was nice, and friendly, and perfect.
Now I know just how detrimental to my life that mindset was.
It causes stress, fake-ness, major self-doubt, and holds you back from going after or doing things you want that you don’t think others would understand.
When I wanted to start an online business, one of the MAIN things holding me back was not the huge learning curve, or the amount of work it would be. It was what others would think. I was hyper-aware that what I wanted to do was VASTLY different than my office job and I could not stop worrying what old or current co-workers would think.
Wanting everyone to like you is not your fault, UNLESS you let it stay that way and hinder your goals, dreams, and life desires.
As humans we are programmed on some level to want the world to like us because that’s how we used to survive wayyyy back in the day. If the caveman, nomad, or whatever group herd cast you out, you were left to survive on your own. So you had to suck it up and be likeable to everyone to stay alive.
Nowadays, that is of course not the case. There are PLENTY of ways to survive without everyone in the world liking you, so IT’S TIME TO CUT THIS BEHAVIOR OUT.
But I know it’s scary. It’s majorly scary. That’s why I’m here to help guide you through it and make it seem less daunting.
So here are some tips for how to let go of that need for everyone to like you:
→ NO ONE is thinking about you as much as you think they are – hate to break it to ya, but it’s very true. This knowledge blew my mind when I first heard it. I somewhat selfishly thought people were paying attention to my every move in life. Turns out, they are not, and even if they do notice a move you make, they don’t care as much as you think they do! People are wrapped up in their own lives. Think about it, do you have the spare time to watch for and analyze every move the random people you’re friends with online make? Of course you don’t. And even if you do notice something new they’re doing, you only think about it for 1 second before moving on to the next thing.
→ Sometimes you make up this story in your head about what people will think of you if you do “X”, but this story you’re telling yourself is NOT reality. We tend to blow things way out of proportion in our own heads. Chances are if this person is a real friend they will be proud and support you no matter what it is! And if they aren’t a real friend, refer back to bullet point #1 – they are not paying attention to your life as closely as you think they are. I used to go around and around in my own head think I knew exactly what “people” would think if I started my own confidence/life coaching business. Then when I actually did it, support poured in from all angles. From friends, from ex-coworkers, from people I hadn’t seen since high school. No one was judging or thought it was weird at all – and if they did, I never heard from those people anyways so who cares?
→ Think to yourself, does it reallyyyy matter if this person, who is not a big part of my life, may not like me that much? This goes along with the above 2 points. If someone you barely know anymore isn’t into what you are doing, why does it matter? They aren’t a part of your life so why should their opinion of your life affect what you do??
→ Sometimes when you think someone is annoyed with you, or doesn’t like you, it could just be a reflection of how their own day is going. This one used to hang me up a lot. I would over-analyze small somewhat negative things that friends or co-workers said and spiral it into the thought that they were mad at me, which then led me to stress over what I could do to make it better. And sometimes they weren’t even really negative things! Have you ever gotten an email or text response that seemed a little short or abrupt, and then immediately thought “well this person must be angry or annoyed at me”? This causes so much UNNECESSARY stress in your life. If this other person is not coming out and directly telling you they are bothered by something you did or didn’t do, don’t assume they are mad at you! 9 times out of 10 it’s just a reflection of how their day, or week, is going and has nothing to do with you.
→ If it’s a family member you don’t quite click with, remember that they love you, and you love them, and sometimes family doesn’t get along or mesh as people, and that’s ok! They will still be there for the parts that count, and it’s ok if you aren’t best friends. You’ve got to accept your differences and let it go. Don’t let them stop you from going after what you want in life just because you are 2 different people who just happen to be part of the same family.
→ Remember that there are people who don’t like Beyonce. Or The Beatles. WHAT! There are so many different people in the world with different personalities and styles, it’s statistically impossible given all the combinations of those things for everyone to like you, so stop worrying about it! You weren’t meant to be friends with those people. *Sidenote, it doesn’t mean you can’t be nice to them, but don’t be sad if they aren’t as nice back. That’s their problem.