Do people's opinions matter?

Do people's opinions matter?

Recently, I was reading an interesting mail in Hindi. A crude translation goes like this… “In life, we are ever busy thinking about what people would think about us. Well, even ‘this’ (i.e., what people would think), if we ourselves are thinking, then, what is left for the people to think about us? So, just chill.”

Indeed, ironically, many of us have this habit of constantly cudgeling our brains, cogitating over people’s opinions about us. Sample this. “Yesterday, at the official party, I shouldn’t have latched onto lengthy chats with the company boss. Hope colleagues aren’t thinking I’m trying to wheedle promotions through fawning and unctuous behaviour.” “Last week, at the social event, I shouldn’t have sported that snazzy dress with sleek shoes. Hope relatives aren’t thinking I made a mockery of myself looking pretty outlandish.”

“I shouldn’t have, in strident voice, hollered at our chauffeur over his duty dereliction. Hope he isn’t thinking of me as a virago or some horrendous harridan!” “I shouldn’t have floundered in my speech at the official party. Hope seniors aren’t thinking of me as a nincompoop!”

Incidentally, all the aforesaid things indubitably indicate how much importance we affix to people’s opinions about us. Which means, what people think of us matters more than what we think of ourselves. What we fail to understand is that what people think doesn’t, in actuality, make even a fig of difference, since in no way, it’d enhance any of our qualities, be it of our looks, cerebral caliber, talents/skills, inner nature, financial status, etc. In the same way, any of our qualities wouldn’t plummet down, just because they think low of them.

Another aspect is, many times, it so happens that unnecessarily we’d have been imaging that people are thinking bad about us. But, in reality, people neither have time nor energy to think of others. Which means, they wouldn’t have thought, in the way we’d have thought, that they’d have thought about us!

Even if at all there are  folks thinking bad about us unreasonably, undeniably they are the ones who are jobless, or the ones who are deprived of something in life we are bestowed with. So, we ought to sympathise with such folks, and yes, learn to chill off!
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