FIXING YOUR FOCUS— talks about the importance of self-worth and how our decisions are easily influenced by other people. It is written in collaboration with my college friend: Daniyal Raza.
About Daniyal: He has recently ventured into digital creation. Propelled by the idea of making a difference and sharing his vulnerabilities, Daniyal focuses on physical and mental health, career development and everything else that comes in between. Follow him on Instagram at @daniyalraza93 if you’re touched by his work.
Do you ever feel inclined to do something but can’t follow through?
Are you putting too much thought into what other people think about your art or craft? Then this post is for you.
Often at times, when we start doing something we are passionate about, the focus is inward meaning we are acting upon how we feel about a certain thing. However, as soon as we gain a following or an audience, this focus tends to shift outward where we start thinking how other people would respond to our work.
Don’t get me wrong, there is no harm in receiving feedback, but this should be done once you are done presenting what you think would add value to the world. Now there are many ways how to go about it:
1-Notice how your energy changes when you speak about something that excites you. This particular thing stands out for you and you really want to work on it.
2- Focus what you’re focusing on. Is it the number of likes and comments or is the satisfaction that you are deriving from adding value in another person’s life?
3- Accept the fact that there will always be criticism even if you are putting out the best work available in this world. So why not invest in something that you truly care about?
Self-worth is a widely misunderstood concept. It should be defined by how you and only you perceive yourself. It is a static view of oneself that is unconditional and must not change on a day to day basis as circumstances take a different turn in your life.
Unfortunately, we have started to confuse our self-worth with how others view us, especially with the advent of social media. Everything we do today is measured by how others respond to it. From the number of likes and comments we get on our pictures to how others view our capabilities, we find ourselves constantly trying to pander to their likings and bringing ourselves down when we miss the mark.
But have you thought, who has put them in charge of your life? Who has allowed them to take control over how you feel about yourself? Remember self-worth is an internal state of being and it stays protected as long as it remains within you. It’s time you snatched that power right back and took charge. Here’s what has worked for me and I hope does for you too:
1. Stop Unjust Comparisons
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The moment you compare yourself to someone else, you kill a part of your spirit. You don’t just end up killing the child inside who was meant to carve his own way, but you also kill the teenager who once rebelled to do things his way – who once had a spark! You’re left with an uninspired adult who doesn’t know where to take himself. So be kind to yourself! The individuality you bring to the table is truly unique. This is absolutely essential in fixing your focus.
I realize it’s easier said than done because every time I see someone achieving great things in life, a part of me starts to think if I am comparing well. I start to worry if people think of me as a loser who couldn’t achieve much. This is where some conscious, positive self-talk is imperative.
Every time I spiral down this thought process, I pause and remind myself of 5 good things that happened to me during the past week. I think of everything that only I can do that makes me loved. Again, it’s a mental exercise that takes time to practice, but hey we have to start somewhere now, don’t we? I don’t always succeed either, but I don’t stop trying.
2. Respect yourself
You respect yourself by treating yourself with kindness and empathy. There’s no other way.
Would you think twice before calling someone a failure to their face?
You would, right?
Then why don’t you think twice before using these adjectives for yourself?
When was the last time you told yourself that it wasn’t your fault that things didn’t work out?
Or was it really your fault?
But did you intend for this to happen?
Then why don’t you forgive yourself? At one point in my life I found myself returning to the same person who had hurt me because perhaps I felt bound by love. Every time I’d go, thinking it’d be different this time, it turned out worse and I’d find myself broken into even smaller pieces. It took me years to realize that I was doing a disservice to my self-worth by allowing myself to spiral down the same route. It took me ages to finally realize my worth, but I did one day. Please know that you deserve better.
3. Start Nurturing Your Body
When your body is nurtured, your mind weaves brilliance. I learnt this a bit late in life but when I did, boy it truly changed everything for me. Start running for just 5 minutes a day and see how you end up feeling after all that sweat dries. Similarly give yourself small treats. Every time you accomplish an emotional goal, reward your body.
Eat well, listen to music, say no to things that take away from you, get a good haircut, go for those occasional fancy massage, make yourself that midnight coffee, call your childhood friend, enjoy listening to your favorite music, start writing a journal, document your thoughts and emotions and life won’t seem like too much of a burden, I promise. You will see your progress.
Remember, you are your own audience and the first applause must always come from you.
- Stop weighing yourself in someone else’s scale
- Don’t be too harsh on yourself and
- Don’t ignore your body as you work on your mental health.
Conclusion on Fixing Your Focus
The message I am trying to give out is simple: Life is too short to excessively think how other people are going to react to your actions. One good way of overcoming this is by asking, do these people pay my bills? If the answer is no, there you go, their opinion shouldn’t really matter.
While I was researching on the topic, I found a pretty good article online that you can give a quick read, it is like a guide on people pleasing: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/what-mentally-strong-people-dont-do/201708/10-signs-youre-people-pleaser
Here is a post on Powerful Affirmations to remind yourself of your self-worth: https://reasonstolivefor.com/i-am-powerful-affirmations/
You can give me a follow on Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/reasonstolivefor.insta/
What are your thoughts on people pleasing and awareness of self worth? Do let us know in comments below ☺