Why do we place such importance on how others perceive us?
We all go through life thinking we know what other people think of us. Our own self-perception has us making assumptions that ‘so-and-so must think that I’m blank’ when in fact so-and-so is actually thinking the opposite. Or, they aren’t thinking about you at all. As Eleanor Roosevelt said:
“You wouldn’t worry so much about what others think of you
if you realized how seldom they do.”
We all want to be liked, by someone. But are you showing your true colours or are you pretending to be something you are not so a specific person will find you attractive and want to be with you?
What if they are doing the same thing to impress you?
How do you know who they really are? How do they know you?
Too much energy, in my opinion, is going into our perceived persona. Social media sites encourage teens to ‘friend’ everyone they remotely know or who remotely knows someone they sort of know, or people they have never met, only to have a multitude of ‘friends’ and appear popular.
Is it that they want to feel popular themselves or do they want others, even the ones they have never met, to think they are popular?
Isn’t it better to have a few close friends who really know you, who get who you are, who know what you’re about, with whom you can share your deepest thoughts and aspirations and who like you for who you are – warts and all? Your true honest-to-goodness BFF’s.
There is an exercise called the Appreciation Circle. A group of friends/colleagues/people who know one another sit in a circle so each can see the other. Starting with one person as the subject, each person in the circle says one thing that they really like or love about that person, then they go onto the next the person and so on.
Seeing ourselves through the love and appreciation of others is a mirror in which we should all gaze.
Imagine if the Appreciation Circle was done in schools from Kindergarten through to high school graduation.
Do you think that would have made a difference in the way you see yourself?