What do they think?

I always wonder what other people are thinking.  I get so self-conscious sometimes it stops me from doing what I set out to do.

I think partially it’s because I grew up under a very critical eye.  Perfection was expected at all times.  For example, in elementary school, I was not allowed to have an eraser on any pencils.  If I did make a mistake, I had to ask for an eraser and prove that I had figured out the correct answer before being able to use said eraser to correct my homework.  No lie.

I used to have nightmares about this little pink eraser...this very one...the Pink Pearl.

I used to have nightmares about this little pink eraser…this very one…the Pink Pearl.

When that person left, the critical eye was gone, but the critical inner voice remained.  I always wondered if it was good enough, did other people like it, did other people like me, was I good enough, was I smart enough…

That voice still sometimes shouts and when it does, it’s hard to shut it up.  I have gotten better over the years at ignoring it but man, it was one hell of an asshole when I was growing up.  I often listened to that voice, that dumb voice that made me wonder what people would think if I did something, said something, wore something, ate something.

As an adult, a new set of what do they think questions have popped up.  What do people think about my parenting skills, what do they think about my child, what do they think about the fact that I’m overweight, what do they think about my writing, what do they think about the car I drive….

I have given up caring about what people think about my parenting.  I know what I’m doing is right.

I have given up caring about what people think about my child.  I know I love her no matter what.

I have given up caring about what people think about my writing.  I don’t write for them.  I write for myself (newsflash – most writers write for themselves).

I have given up caring about those people who will judge me for my possessions.

It is hard though for me to give up caring about what people think about my appearance.  I don’t know why I can’t let that one go.  I shouldn’t care.  I know what I’m doing.  I know how far I’ve come.  Why, then do I care so much about them?  Why do I spend the energy caring about what people may or may not think when they see me for the first time?

Maybe Deep Thought would be able to answer that question.  Or maybe she’d tell me that the answer was on the computer planet she built…who knows?

Is the answer 42?

Is the answer 42?

This post is part of January 2013 NaBloPoMo.  This month’s theme is Energy.  Today’s topic was “What reoccurring thought uses up a lot of your mental energy?”  Tell me what you think.  I do care what you think.  Honest.

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4 Comments

Filed under NaBloPoMo

4 responses to “What do they think?

  1. Carol

    Wow, I cannot believe the eraser part. I mean I believe you, I just think how sad. I’m sorry you had to endure that, as a child that had to be difficult. May I ask, was it an “at home” situation or was it the school you went to? If that’s too personal, I completely understand.

    Good for you on moving on about the caring what others think, I am the same. I do still let it bother me a lot though on things it should not. A friend of mine is always telling me “when are you going to stop letting those people and what they say get to you?” I think you’re an amazing writer (even though you write for yourself I enjoy it) and I can tell from the things you do share, your daughter is one lucky daughter to have such a great mom!

    • ClewisWrites

      Thank you for the kind words. It was an at home thing. It isn’t hard to talk about but it just sounds crazy and that is sadly one of the more milder stories. It is amazing how something so seemingly small can have such lasting effects on a child.

      So the lesson I took away, one I still kind of struggle with, is that there is no perfect. There is no ideal hat everyone can achieve. Everyone has their own perfect and that is a wonderful thing for every single person.

  2. I can so relate to what you said about the perfectionist/annoying jerk-of-an-inner-voice. It is so hard to delete after being a part of my thoughts for so long.

    “It is hard though for me to give up caring about what people think about my appearance. I don’t know why I can’t let that one go. I shouldn’t care. I know what I’m doing. I know how far I’ve come. Why, then do I care so much about them? Why do I spend the energy caring about what people may or may not think when they see me for the first time?”

    So connect to this one, and would love to hear your answers 🙂

    • ClewisWrites

      I wish there were easy answers. I guess it comes to a point where you have to find within yourself that truth that you are doing what you need to do, regardless of what anyone may think. Obviously, those that love you will have opinions but it is up to you how you take those opinions into consideration. As for the rest, don’t give them the power. It’s so easy to say to someone else but actually putting it into practice is a whole different story!

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