Should you care about what other people think?
This is a really good question. And to be honest, it’s not always such an easy question to answer.
On one hand, there’s actually a lot of pressure to please other people in our world.
Every day, we see this manifested not only in real-life, but also on social media and the online world—especially with the increase of behaviors like ‘virtue signaling’ and acting ‘fake’ on social media.
See, when we do things that other people don’t like, there’s a chance that they’ll walk away from us, cease communication, stop hanging out with us, and possibly even banish us from their social circles.
Losing these relationships can be difficult and damaging because it can cause us to lose out on companionship and the benefits of those relationships.
Plus, rejection hurts. Nobody can deny that!
With that being said, it’s also true that there’s a cost to caring about what people think of you.
For example, if a person cares too much about what other people think of them, they could run the risk of compromising on their own values and standards while trying to please other people.
This can lead to a sort of ‘reactionary fakeness’ that can really impact your level of authenticity in life.
And this can lead to a different set of social dangers.
The truth of the matter is that nobody likes fake people.
In fact, as humans, we are hardwired to seek out people who are authentic, real, and trustworthy.
They’re also hardwired to avoid people who try to deceive, manipulate, and just in-general speak and act in ways that can’t be considered ‘trustworthy.’
So it’s also true that attempts to please people, just for the sake of being well-liked, could really backfire in a bad way—especially if doing so causes us to act in ways that make it seem like we only care about people liking us for the benefits that those relationships can bring us.
So what’s the answer?
Well, as it turns out, the answer is that it’s up to you—but it probably depends on the quality of your own relationships, and on how much of an emphasis you’re putting on striving to be a self-validated person in your own life.
There are a lot of advantages to being true to yourself, and to being willing to risk offending people for the sake of being true to your own values.
And as it turns out, behaving in this sort of authentic manner is often exactly the type of behavior that tends to lead to an influx and increase in more high-quality relationships in a person’s life.
In other words, not caring whether or not you’re actually liked by people. might actually make you more authentically likable. It’s a paradox, but it’s true.
So as it turns out, being true to yourself and authentic to who you are may actually make you more likable in the long run.