People Don't Actually Care What You Do & Why That's Awesome
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The Bad News: No one really cares what you do.
The Good News: No one really cares what you do!
Have you ever seen this meme?
|Image Credit: Unknown
So yeah, turns out there are two ways to interpret that fact that most people don't give a flying fart about what you do with yourself or your life.
The first is to feel really, really sad about it. As a result, maybe you spend your life trying to be whatever the current version of popular is so that you can get noticed and matter. So that people will give a shit.
The second is to feel really, really happy about it. As a result, maybe you get to live way more authentically because you can be off in your little corner doing your own thing. Because no one gives a shit.
Ok, so why is it true that most people don't really care what you do? (Just in case you were arguing with me in your head.)
Because of this little thing called the “egocentricity bias.”
...most of us do go around thinking of ourselves as fairly central to the unfolding of the universe... this [is not] a phenomenon confined to megalomaniacs or pathological narcissists, but something much more fundamental to being human: it’s the understandable tendency to judge everything from the perspective you occupy... These self-centered judgments are part of what psychologists call the “egocentricity bias,” and they make good sense from an evolutionary standpoint. If you had a more realistic sense of your own sheer irrelevance, considered on the timescale of the universe, you’d probably be less motivated to struggle to survive, and thereby to propagate your genes.
In a nutshell: everybody thinks they're the centre of the universe, and that's totally normal.
But that means you’re not the centre of the Universe to anyone but, well, YOU.
(And if you meet someone who makes you the centre of their Universe, you better run the other way, FAST. Hellooo Clarice...)
|Image Credit: Romain Virtuel on Unsplash
Since you're not the centre of anyone else's Universe, most people don't really care what you do.
Oh sure, they might sit up and take notice if you do something tremendously fabulous or stupendously stupid, but after they've taken note of said event and possibly passed a perfunctory judgment on it (one that you're likely to take far too personally), they'll move back to the centre of their Universe (a.k.a. - not YOU).
Now maybe you have parents or family that are super invested in what you do. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but that shit's about how they want things to unfold in their little Universe. It’s about them, it’s not actually about YOU.
There you have it: at the end of the day, no one really cares what you do.
Now, why this is such a good thing: because you can just go ahead and be authentically yourself. Nobody's paying attention to what you're doing, so what you're doing doesn't really matter that much.
If you’re supporting yourself financially and you’re not bothering anyone else, then you’re free to do whatever you want with your life.
You can DO whatever you want and BE whoever you want, is what I’m saying.
I'm 42 and am finally exploring the extent of the "nobody gives a crap about what I do" thing.
- Sometimes, I walk out of the gym with a towel still wrapped around my hair. No one notices evidenced by the fact that no one has ever pointed and laughed. Because no one cares...
- I go to the grocery store in jogging pants with no make-up on. No one is paying attention; they're busy squeezing melons and making sure the kids don't put five boxes of Oreos in the cart. No one cares...
For the first time in my life, I'm getting to discover who I am underneath the layers of judgments I imagined other people had of me.
I've spent my life gripping really tightly to people's opinions. Trying to contain myself in a way that was socially acceptable. Trying to be perfect and beyond reproach in every way, which was beyond exhausting.
But perfectionism is really narcissism in disguise because it's based on the assumption that people are paying such close attention to you that they'll notice these tiny little things which you're hyper-focused on.
No one notices that shit except you. Seriously.
Realizing that you can be whoever you want and do whatever you want because no one actually cares is marvellous; there’s so much emotional space to just be yourself.
Everyone is the star of their own show; everyone is the centre of their own universe.
People just aren't thinking about you.
People just aren't thinking about you.
And because of that, you're free to be yourself and do your own thing.
You do you, boo.
|Image Credit: Photo by DESIGNECOLOGIST on Unsplash
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