What drives our need for approval?
Last week I had to read a chapter in the P.O.W.E.R. Learning: Strategies for Success in College and Life. Before reading I thought “This is going to be boring”. Well, I was wrong. I guess that’s one of the reasons they say “Not to judge a book by its cover”. It went into depth about realizing your learning styles etc. There was a section in the beginning chapter that really spoke to me. It was titled “Who am I?”. It talks about discovering yourself and self-fulfilling prophecy occurs when we hold a belief or expectation that affects our behavior. We sometimes permit others’ views of who we are and their expectations about us to determine our behavior.
This short entry came straight out of the book that I would like to share “In short, the negative messages that we hear from others can come to act as a prison, placing us in bondage to others’ negative beliefs about who we are and what our capabilities are. It’s crucial, then, not to buy into others’ negative views of who we are. Our biggest help, and sometimes handicap, in this effort, is self-esteem”.
After reading this I had a moment of clarity. This is something I was constantly battling with. This short chapter that was part of my homework assignment was a message for me. A week later I was laying in bed ready to fall asleep, but I couldn’t words were flowing through my mind. I had to get them on paper. It was to a point where it was so loud I had to release it. I held on to that note of words for a while contemplating whether or not to make a post about it. This morning I decided to share it. Some of you may be battling with this very thing and maybe you need a reminder or some guidance.
One thing that many of us encounter myself included is the need to seek others approval. The real question is why? As human beings, we focus on the thoughts and actions of others. Again why? If we were to take every opinion someone else has to offer and act upon it we are bound to fail. I say this because you can’t let others make your decisions in YOUR life. If you do you will get pulled away from the path you were meant to be on to go down one that you will get lost on. By agreeing to listen and allowing others to influence your journey you are taking the responsibility of the failure or the success. You are the one who has to deal with their consequence.
Sometimes we need to hear the truth even if it does hurt or make us feel uneasy. This is YOUR life you do what you want. Go after your dreams your goals. Don’t limit yourself to the judgment of others. Let them be judge mental in their own corner while you chase after your dreams your version of success. If you continue to live on repeat where do you think that will get you? Who said life was a circle? Why do you feel the need to have everything you do be accepted by someone other than yourself? Why do you need approval? The approval from yourself is more than enough. Be confident and be true to yourself.
What you are doing in your life may sound silly to someone else. You decide how successful you will be at it. After all, you are the one putting in all the hard work. It’s easy to judge when your not the one spending hours upon hours building something from the ground up. Most of the time judgment comes from someone who feels bad about themselves. Or envies you because you are living your dream not just talking about it. So who cares? Do what makes you happy and be proud of yourself. The main thing is to keep going and strive for the best. You can do anything you set your mind to.
“When I discover who I am, I’ll be free.”-Ralph Ellison