How to Stop Caring if People Like You

Something I’ve always had an issue with is wanting everyone to like me.  I’m a true people pleaser.  Bringing out my favorite comparison, I’m like a multi-colored pen and will click down the color I think I need in order to be “correct” in that situation.  Something I have got to work harder on getting better at is the idea that not everyone will like me, and that’s okay.  That doesn’t mean that I am a bad person or am unlikable.  Just that I don’t necessarily mesh with that particular person.  I try to, but I don’t like everyone either.  I can say that I’ve only really HATED one person, and I haven’t had to see that person in years.  Totally unlike me, I could not find one redeemable quality about this person.  Every last nerve pinged with them around.  Anyway, I digress.

So if even I can hate a person, why do I take it so hard when someone doesn’t like me?  And even more important, why does it matter if they like me or not?  I have all the friends and family I could want and I’m so loved and lucky to have those who I do have in my life.  I don’t need the negativity, I have enough of that in my own head.

Now, how the heck do I get over this?  THAT I have no idea.  I haven’t learned much about this that has stuck yet, but I’m working on it.  There is so much out there about it and it’s something that we’ve heard about over and over growing up.  So why can some do it and others can’t?  That I don’t know, but I do know some things I’m going to keep trying to do until maybe they will stick.

The first thing I need to do is really evaluate if that person REALLY matters.  Do I really care if some random person on the street likes me?  I shouldn’t.  They have absolutely no bearing on my life.  Do I care if my sisters, parents, friends, husband like me?  Absolutely.  I need to be able to shrug off those that don’t matter to my life and not care about their opinion of me.

Status:  Work in progress

Number two is to be who I really am and love who I really am.  Stop being a multi-colored pen and just be a giant mint green sharpie.  Mint green is my favorite, I need to be my favorite too.  That will help any negativity slide right off me.  This blog and my intense therapy is really helping me to learn some self-compassion, self-care and hopefully self-love (not THAT self-love you pervs) after some more time.  I have hope.  I’m now able to hold on to four things that are only me that I’m proud of, so this is an improvement.

Status:  Improving

Three is to use my new anxiety skills and think of the absolute worst-case scenario if someone doesn’t like me.  Catastrophize as much as possible and see that it’s just NOT a big deal.  Especially someone that I don’t come into contact with, or doesn’t affect my life in any way.  Go crazy thinking about how bad it can be.  Then when that’s done, I’ll see that the worst is likely not an ounce bad.  Boom.  Over.

Status:  Ehhhh, Thinking About it

These three things I’m hoping will help me in a lot of situations.  I hope I can keep in mind I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s completely okay.  I don’t like all teas, some people don’t like coffee (mmMMMmmm), and others don’t like soda.  It’s all in the individual’s tastes, not in any defects of the beverage.

Picture by u/ateumi on Reddit

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