What other people choose to think about me is none of my business? When I first heard that statement (through Al Anon materials) I thought… wow… that’s a bit harsh. We all want to know what others think of us, and know we are doing the ’right thing’ such as being kind etc…. don’t we????
I would hate to think I had inadvertently offended anyone or said something wrong and now that person is upset!
I came to learn this statement was to be taken in context with “Keep my side of the street clean”.
This statement has more to do with maintaining personal boundaries. When you have been in a situation where your personal boundaries have been blurred, and you find yourself constantly ‘people pleasing’ as opposed to self respecting, this is where this statement comes in handy.
It is the beginning of letting go and becoming true to your own beliefs and desires. If, for instance, as a child, you felt you were always being told you are annoying or in the way, or being criticised often; and you have brought that to adulthood with you; could you apply this statement to your childhood critic? It is THAT person who has THEIR opinion of you, it says more about them than you!
Read more in the book “What You Think of Me Is None of My Business“
Internal conflict that says “But maybe they are right? If I just try to be more… (insert behaviour)… then they will like me”. I have not found that to be true more times than not.
I can allow THAT person to have their opinion, but it is not MY opinion. What they think, is their business, not my business. In this way, your compass of life can come back to your own true north. You can find what you want to be, find your own opinion of yourself and allow others to have theirs, within the boundaries of respect of yourself and others.
It is very freeing once you get the hang of it! But it takes a while to get the hang of it.
Validate your own feelings instead of reading how well you are doing with the opinion of others. Perhaps you may agree with some of the opinions, perhaps others you don’t agree with? All the while keeping in mind if your side of the street is clean (not being deliberately offensive or hurtful for example), then you are well on your way to understanding the empowerment, peace and freedom of “What other people think of me is none of my business.”
Start off small today. Smile as you walk down the street, or sing loudly in the car!!!!! What those others think of you isn’t as important as you being happy today!