I have an ice cream.
This ice cream is a double scoop, one scoop being chocolate chip, the other being matcha (I love matcha).
I like my ice cream. It is delicious and makes me transcend my mortal form temporarily as I slobber over it like an angry pitbull.
Some people around me do not like my ice cream, or how I eat my ice cream. They are critical of my delicious choices. They speak among one another, critical of my slurping technique and I become aware of being judged.
I continue to slurp my ice cream how I want, tell them (either explicitly or in my mind) to fuck on off and go about my day.
Life is good.
Now that we’ve got the ice cream story out of the way, let’s talk about being judged, and whether it matters (it doesn’t). It’s a very common occurrence in people’s lives to be worried about what other people think of them because of the actions they take or the things they say, whether it be within a small group context or in a wider form such as the online world.
Being judged is one of the scarier things that people go through, particularly in this day and age where literally everything you say is basically cemented onto the internet. People have legitimate breakdowns over the thought of being judged, being criticized, being attacked, etc. It is actually quite incredible how much psychological damage this fear creates in the mind of people.
The important point here is, the mind of people. That’s the thing about being judged and criticized – while the words being vomited at you by some meandering idiot online have certain defined meanings, it’s ultimately just sound that is coming out of a monkey’s mouth and you can consciously choose to take it seriously or not.
Someone calls you an idiot. An idiot is another word for calling someone stupid. You register the meaning of it, identify the intent of the person, then swallow it whole, allowing it to fester and ruin your day, because random pictureless twitter account called you an idiot. Why?
Why do you do that? Why does it matter so much? Why do you insist on making other people’s thoughts your problem? Here’s the thing: culturally speaking we are constantly bombarded with the idea that what other people think of us is important. This is from an early age too. The “love and peace” kumbaya bullshit they throw at you in school is all designed around taking into consideration what other people think. But news flash – it’s wrong. You are the decider behind who you should take seriously when being judged.
Let that sink in: you decide who is important and who is worth listening to.
Read it again if you need to.
Other people’s thoughts, by default, are not your bloody problem. People judging you or criticizing you isn’t your problem. If they’re important to you and you trust them, you can take their judgement into consideration – but it’s still not your problem. What people say to you can have all the meaning in the world or be absolutely meaningless within every possible sense. The decider behind that is you.
You don’t have to accept and take shit when you’re just enjoying ice cream, or painting a picture based on your style, or getting into a relationship that Larry from accounting doesn’t like. It doesn’t actually matter unless you make it matter. This is a conscious choice that you can make. Yes, if you’re used to always taking other people’s expulsions of air into account, at first it’s going to be quite tricky to do. Your mind is going to be throwing shit out saying “RIGHT BUT LARRY DOESN’T LIKE CLAIRE THAT’S BAD”.
Suppress it. Top down, conscious suppression. Do not take that old way of thinking seriously. Replace it, consciously, with a new thought. “Fuck Larry. I like Claire AND I like my matcha ice cream. Larry can eat a matcha flavored dick.”
You can make the decision to change your thoughts and approach to life. If someone is unhappy with how you do things or the way you live, you don’t have to make it your problem. Recognize their judgement is their problem, and it is only something to give a damn about if you let it in. It’s optional.
Eat your ice cream how you want. Date the people you like. Pursue the job you love. Write how you want to write. It doesn’t matter what other people think. As I wrote in my previous post, be how you want to be, and do it with integrity.
I strongly believe that many people in the world do not do what they want and how they want because of the fear of what other people will think. I get it, I was in that position once, too. I think most people have been.
But after taking a temporary hit of nihilism and also identifying that I’m an interesting miracle that has limited time, I no longer have the time or energy to give much of a shit about what people say. It really doesn’t matter.
So go have your ice cream the way you want. You will never be this young again.
Paypal me an ice cream.
Double scoops please. I’m poor.