How many times have you asked someone else what they think about something?
There are certainly plenty of people we would never want an opinion from. Either we wouldn’t value their opinion, or, we might suspect ahead of time that it would not agree with our own personal opinion. Perhaps the main reason we ask for someone else’s opinion is to validate our own opinion because that makes us feel right.
- Of course some brave souls ask those they trust, not knowing what the answer will be. These courageous people are not looking for approval, but rather solid direction. They have a desire to learn, or, as the case may prove to be, to unlearn.
- For most people, the opinion of others carries a lot of weight. And when someone else’s opinion is not in line with theirs, it hurts their feelings. Even if they know the other person does not see the whole picture, it still stings.
- As our two children grew up, I tried to impress upon them that they would never, ever be able to please everyone. I told them there were just too many cliques and groups to try to get everyone’s approval. I encouraged them to love everyone, but to be themselves.
- Here’s another side to the coin: many times we misunderstand what others are saying to us or about us. We get emails and often wonder, “What does she mean by that?” We read into the words and many times even interject the tone we imagine behind what was written.
The same is true with text messages.
Unless you are familiar with the way certain people send a text, a short abbreviated text might seem a bit haughty to you. And again, it is so easy to read into, or in fact, fabricate the tone in which we think that the text was sent.
Of course a lot of the blame for this is our poor writing skills. Who writes letters anymore? A quick Tweet, a brief comment on Facebook, a short email, or, an abbreviated text message is what we call communication?
The current forms of “communication” these days have brought to the surface many people’s insecurities. Why are other people’s opinions so important to us? Does it really matter what they think? We cannot please everybody.
- Teenagers especially just want to belong and be accepted. Some teens end up in trouble by trying to please their peers and gain acceptance. And, what about adults who never outgrew the “please like me” teen years?
- You cannot second guess yourself day in and day out, wondering what others think. Whose Opinion Matters Most? If you are really not sure about something, then have the courage to ask someone whose advice you trust. When you get the counsel you need, then heed it and move forward.