‘What if I give the wrong impression?’
‘Will people still like me’
‘What if they don’t?‘
It’s amazing how after all these years, these questions can still plague me. I mean, come on! Haven’t I grown up already? Aren’t I already a secure, independent adult who doesn’t need approval from people I meet, bloggers I read and facebook acquaintances who really don’t care much about who I am or what I do?
The incident that sparked off this mental tirade was a little mistake I made while reading another person’s blog. I was fiddling with the mousepad and oops, accidentally clicked on the ‘dislike’ button.
‘Oh-my-god! What did I do? I don’t not-like the post! It was a mistake! Should I leave a comment to apologize? Should I ‘like’ the post to make up for the ‘dislike’? What if the person tracks back the ‘dislike’ to me and then, leaves bad comments?’ And on it went, till the rational side of me kicked in and yelled, ‘What are you doing?!’
‘Umm, I’m worrying if someone out there will not like me because of what I did…’ Silly Me replied, somewhat sheepishly.
‘Didn’t you just give your daughter a talk on learning to live without seeking her friends’ approval?’ Rational Me said. ‘Didn’t you encourage her to ignore snide comments and the taunts of bullies, to be her own person because she’s fabulous? Didn’t you just tell her that there will always be someone who doesn’t like her, that the whole world is filled with haters, and that she can rise above all that by focusing on those who do care for her? Didn’t you tell your daughter to stop doing exactly what you just did?’
‘Umm… Yeah…’ Silly-And-Now-Contrite-Me whimpered.
‘Now stop your nonsense and get on with your writing!’ Rational Me said, quiet sternly.
Very meekly, I returned to writing a post (which obviously, I deleted, to write this one instead).
Will I ever grow out of caring what others think about me? Hmm… maybe not entirely. I like people to like me. Who doesn’t? But I am definitely learning how to handle it better. I think.
Dear god… don’t let me be like this till I’m 62. It’s a horrible wretched way to live.
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”
– Dr. Suess