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Want to Stop Caring What People Think About You? Focus on These 8 Things Instead

Wondering how to stop caring what other people think about you? You are not alone!

Have you ever walked away from a conversation thinking, “Ugh, I sounded so stupid! I shouldn’t have said that.” Or the dreaded, “What will they think of me now?”

Many of us have. The desire to be accepted and liked is nearly universal.

Author and researcher Brené Brown explains this desire well:

“A deep sense of love and belonging is an irreducible need of all women, men, and children. We are biologically, cognitively, physically, and spiritually wired to love, to be loved, and to belong. When those needs are not met, we don’t function as we are meant to.”

Sometimes the need to belong and be liked by others takes over and what others think about us holds more importance than what we think and feel about ourselves.

While the need to belong is hardwired in us all, sometimes that need to belong and be liked by others takes over and what others think about us holds more importance than what we think and feel about ourselves. This can lead to unhealthy attachments, being taken advantage of, and even anxiety and depression issues.

Wanting to be thought of positively isn’t inherently a bad thing. Each of us needs feedback on how others view us to maintain balance and to stay attuned to how our behavior impacts others.

But too much concern about how others think about us is unhealthy. It can lead to us valuing only what others want from or think about us. This is why it’s important for us to not care what others think as much.

So, how do you stop caring what people think of you? We got you. Read on for tips on how to let go of caring so much about what other people think.

But first, learn about Emotional Intelligence: What EQ Is, How It Varies From IQ, and Why It Matters

Here Are 8 Tips to Help You Stop Caring What People Think:

If you recognize yourself as being too anxious about how others think of you, there are steps that you can take to regain a healthy and loving relationship with yourself.

1. Maintain Perspective

Others are not thinking about you as much as you think they are.

Seriously. We all have enough to think about. On average, people have between 12,000 and 60,000 thoughts per day.

So, even if someone thinks 3 things about you in the brief moment that you did or said something that you think was weird, that is literally .005% of their thoughts that day.

This isn’t to tell you that you’re not as important as you think you are, because you are important. Instead, this is meant to show you that everyone’s mind is just as occupied as yours.

We all have insecurities. If you’re concerned about making a good impression with someone you’ve just met, most likely they are equally concerned. We all have the same challenges.


2. Get to Know Yourself and Your Values

How well do you truly know yourself? What do you want in life? What do you value? What do you really like?

It is vital that you know and understand your needs and desires. Without that knowledge, how can you accurately make choices about your relationships, career, and hobbies?

If your choices are influenced by how others will think about you, then you not only risk losing yourself, but you risk becoming unhappy and unfulfilled. Your values, goals, and needs should lead your choices and will help you stop caring what people think

Try asking yourself, “If I were not worried about being judged, what would I do / try / pursue?”

3. Know That You Are Doing Your Best

You did the best that you could with the tools and knowledge that you had at the time. Seriously. You truly did.

Even if you said or did something silly, fell down, smeared your makeup, burnt your dinner, or wore your clothes inside out all day, you still did the best you could with the tools and knowledge you had at that time.

Everything we do has a positive intent behind it. It isn’t always obvious, but it is still there.

For example, if I buy my coworker a cup of coffee only to have her tell me that she gave up coffee last week, I could beat myself up over forgetting she gave up coffee, or I could let it go and remind myself that I did the best I could and my intentions were pure.

4. Take Full Ownership of Your Feelings

When we base our feelings on other’s opinions, we are allowing them to control us. By giving the ownership of our feelings to another, we are giving up control of our emotions. Taking ownership of our feelings is a major step in not caring what others think.

If your friend didn’t return your call or text, you might feel bad, sad, or ignored. Later, you might want to say to your friend, “You made me feel bad / sad / ignored!”

To change how other’s actions “make” you feel, you need to change the way you think about it.

However, the fact is that the only person who can make you feel anything is you. No one, other than you, can control how you feel. You are the owner of every single emotion and feeling you have, and, remember, you and only you, can stop caring what people think.

To change how other’s actions “make” you feel, you need to change the way you think about it. They didn’t “make” you feel this way; you had an emotional reaction and that reaction led to a feeling.

This isn’t an easy or quick fix. It will take time to take ownership of your feelings and stop caring what people think. Be gentle with yourself and know that it will get easier with practice.


5. Let Go of Perfection

Perfection is an illusion. It can be difficult to let go of the thought that if you’re able to do or say things in just the right way that you will be loved and accepted by all.

The fact of the matter is that no one is perfect. Every single human makes mistakes. Honestly, without mistakes we would miss out on valuable lessons. Without mistakes we would not have the opportunity to see our strength when we pick ourselves back up and try again.

We are fallible beings for a reason. Embrace your mistakes and enjoy the growth that comes with them. When we’re not afraid of failing, it’s easier to stop caring what people think. And it’s liberating too!

6. Shift Your Negative Thought Patterns

Approximately 80% of the 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts we have per day are negative. Not all negative thoughts are bad per se. Being alert is a survival mechanism.

However, most negative thoughts are useless. For example, you might assume the worst, or filter out the good in a situation, and focus only on the negative. By focusing on the negative, the mindset that you carry forth from that situation throughout the remainder of your day is negative.

By acknowledging the positive and the negative in a situation, and then focusing only on the positive flips your attitude for the rest of the day. Notice your thoughts and question them rather than allowing your mind to run away with the negative and fleeting thoughts.

7. Lead With Authenticity

Somewhere out there are people with whom you can identify with and who will appreciate you for you, quirks and all. Spending time and energy trying to conform to the way others live is time and energy wasted. Instead, spend time and energy cultivating authenticity.

“Our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.” – Brené Brown

Wear your weirdness proudly!! I promise that the people who truly love you for you will value your quirks!

As Brené Brown says, we can never truly find a sense of belonging unless we present our authentic, imperfect selves to the world. “Our sense of belonging can never be greater than our level of self-acceptance.”

The more we can accept ourselves, the less we feel the need to care what others think.

8. Embrace Vulnerability

Being vulnerable means to share the most important, authentic parts of yourself with someone whom you care about, and risking rejection.

It means to be seen and heard for who you are at the core. It means you stop caring what people think of you and instead, vulnerably exposing yourself, despite the potential for being hurt.

This can be terrifying. However, your option is to hide your true self, to be inauthentic with those you love, and to be closed off with the people you care about which can lead to loneliness and feeling unseen.

We don’t grow when we play it safe. With vulnerability comes growth, wisdom, and a beautiful sense of freedom.

Focusing On These Things Is How to Stop Caring What People Think

Letting go of what others think about you isn’t easy. It also isn’t a quick switch. It will take time to begin to change your thinking patterns, let your guard down, get to truly know yourself, and embrace you for you. And that is ok!

We don’t grow when we play it safe. With vulnerability comes growth, wisdom, and a beautiful sense of freedom.

Be kind to yourself. Don’t judge when you fall back into old ways of thinking. Instead, acknowledge it and move on. This is a positive and impactful life change – enjoy the process.

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What’s Your Emotional Intelligence? What EQ Is, How It Differs From IQ, and Why It Matters
Emotional intelligence is vital to long-term success and happiness. In the IQ versus EQ debate, EQ will win every time. Find out why here.
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Elisha Thompson

Elisha Thompson is a yogi, an academic, and an author. She is a registered yoga teacher with 400 hours of training. Aside from yoga, Elisha’s greatest passion is writing. Her new book, Yoga for Kink, will be published this year. In her spare time, she loves to travel, spend time with loved ones, eat good food, and cuddle with unicorns.

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