I read a blog posted by Emelina today where she stated that she was letting go of her focus on what “They” might think.
It was unnerving, and comforting at the same time to see my own thoughts written in black and white by someone else!
I’ve often wondered what it would be like to live without a thought to what others thought of me.
I’ve created situations where I could practice this.
Situation #1: While coming to a stop sign I have sat in my car until the driver behind me honks. I then have looked up, smiled and waved as I drove off. The important part for me in this activity is that under non-simulated circumstances if someone honked at me, I would think that THEY were thinking I was a stupid driver, or some other derogatory thought about me. In this example, I get to decide what I want to believe THEY are thinking of me. Since I’m making up someone else’s thoughts anyway, I might as well make it positive! So, in this case, I tell myself THEY are thinking, “What a lovely woman in that car, I think I’ll honk and let her know how wonderful I think she is!”
Situation #2: When I am in a good mood, I get silly. I know THEY may think I’m immature to dance around when there is no music, or THEY might think I’m stupid to sing that childish song. THEY might even think, “What a horrible voice she has!” However, I can chose not care what THEY think, because the truth of the matter is, I’m experiencing happiness in that moment, and I will not let someone take my happiness from me.
Situation #3: While presenting to a group of people on eating disorder recovery, I noticed my mind wondering what THEY thought about the size of my stomach, (which I had judged to be too big). Since the topic was about body image and our thoughts about our bodies, I used this “in the moment” opportunity to disclose this thought and model the ability to let it go once I acknowledged it.
I still have a long way to go, but I’m grateful for the reminder that THEY are not in charge of my life. I am the one in charge of me and I choose to be as true to myself as I can be. Being authentically me is my self-love gift to me and those I love.
How would your life be different if you didn’t care what THEY thought?
Michelle Minero is a licensed marriage family therapist who specializes in eating disorder recovery. She created an intensive outpatient eating disorder program in 2000, brought ANAD (Anorexia Nervosa and Associated Disorders, Inc.) to Petaluma shortly after and founded EDRS (Eating Disorder Recovery Support, Inc.), a Marin and Sonoma County based 501(c)3 non-profit organization in 2005. In 2011, Michelle co-founded the Love Warrior Community with her daughter, Emelina, an online community that helps people cultivate self-love, self-acceptance and body acceptance through creative expression. Michelle is finishing her book, Self-Love: The Only Diet That Works, and her dream is to see a world filled with people who love themselves and their bodies. Connect with Michelle on Facebook and Twitter and help spread the Self-Love Movement!