Let go of other people’s opinions and set your Soul free
It took divine intervention and honesty from a friend to truly realize that the only thing that matters in this world is myself and my Soul’s calling. A story of finding peace with who I am and the 3 teachings that changed my world.
A lot of our energy is tied up in what other people think or do not think about us. Managing other people’s impression of us, doing what we think will be appreciated by others, hiding, fearing other people’s opinions, feeling ashamed, insecure, unsure.
It has been the subject of many hours of therapy in my own life. As well as it later has become a central topic in my own work with clients – both in leadership and personal development. I’d say that it is one of the top 5 challenges that keep people from living a full, happy life.
The crazy thing is that many are not even aware of it or how much it affects their life. There is so much conditioning in our society that we accept it as a Truth. We think we don’t care about other people’s opinions, until we dig five inches into our life, and that assumption crumbles. The point being, we spend so much energy without even knowing it on managing other people’s expectations in may ways.
And it is heart-breaking. Because it is a battle we can never win and it only keeps us small and limited. For me it took an intensive healing journey followed by Divine intervention, and the truth from an honest friend for me to finally realize this.
My own struggle pulled me in opposite directions
This topic has played out its own peculiar drama in my life where I have struggled with opposing forces within myself. The need to be liked and the need to do my own thing regardless of what other thinks.
My Soul-inspired self has, since I was a kid, always wanted to walk it's own path, independent of others, the group, the norms, the collective. It led me to never be a part of a group, but instead be more of a social butterfly. I have let go of relationships when they stifled my growth. I have broken norms to pursue my own path. This part of me instinctively knows that the only one I need to answer to is my Soul, and that I can source everything I need from within myself.
But it came at a cost. Since I was a child, I have bumped up against a lot of opinions and judgment about me. And as I grew in age others opinions of me only grew too. And if I didn’t hear it from the Horse’s mouth, then someone would make sure to whisper in my ear. Find a name in the book, and it has probably come my way.
The other half of me, my personality Self never liked that. It is the part of me, which has a deep and painful desire for belonging, and holds a lot of fears and insecurities. Deep down, this part of me is afraid of being alone, being left out, of not being accepted, of not being liked, of not making it, of being excluded.
My Self is not happy with the consequences of my Soul’s choices. It is not happy about not feeling it belong. It has been angry and caused me to judge myself so quickly, before no one else got the chance. It wants to make my choices for me to keep me safe from the fears. And as I grew up, it made a lot of noise to be in charge.
As a result, I was carrying a heavy burden of pain and a lot of subconscious energy was tied up in managing this part of me. So when I was walking my own path, it was a heavy path to walk. And walking the path of Self, stifled my Soul. Something had to change.
A healing path that led me back to ground zero
I set out on my path of healing and self-discovery with the belief that if I just got fixed and healed, then I would stop meeting misunderstanding, judgment and opinions from others.
So for many, many years, the deep underlying premise for my healing journey was that if I just healed all my wounds and was the best version of myself, people would – if not all love me – then at least those who didn’t would leave me alone, and not have an opinion about me. Or that I would get to a point where no part of me would care if they did or didn’t.
OH BOY, could I have been more wrong. As my conditioning cleared for my true Soul to transpire. As my fears were healed into courage and joy. As my self-doubt was transformed into self-love. As I moved mountains and walked deep valleys of transformation. As my consciousness soared. All I found was that it took me right back where I started. Back to ground Zero.
The more healed I became, the more aligned I got, and the more I showed up as the best, most conscious version of myself, the more my mere presence could rock the boat and stir up other people’s shit.
The turning points
Three things happened in my life that finally made me realize that to get the world to love you is a game that you firstly will never win, and which secondly is a game that is a waste to even put your odds for happiness on.
- Being alone and disliked is a condition of Soul-living
I met a Spiritual teacher who put it straight. If you want to follow your Soul calling, being alone and disliked is a condition you cannot escape. Make peace with it. So I finally did. (Her name is Majbritte Ulrikkeholm, fyi). It changed the premise for my healing from thinking I could escape judgment to being OK with being judged and doing my own thing despite. I would not sacrifice myself to succeed on other people’s premises or to belong with others. But I also softened my beliefs about what it means to be alone.
- People’s opinions are just that – opinions. Only you know the truth.
The teaching came timely for me as I for the first time since stepping into higher consciousness had gathered a group of people for a mission I had set up. But I realize that just because we subscribe to the same idea and purpose, it doesn’t mean we come from the same level of operating in the world. And we were not operating from the same level of self-insight, responsibility and consciousness. The more conscious and Soul-driven I was, and the more in my Truth I was, the more I just triggered other people’s wounds and limitations, and the more they projected their own stuff on to me. My Soul didn’t want to spend time on others people’s drama and I had to walk away – even though it meant going it alone and leaving a dream behind. Being in alignment and knowing my truth and my intentions, I realized that other people’s opinions are only their opinions, arising from their own limitations. It has nothing to do with the Truth. And when they are not playing in your league, they are not going to get it. Those who are will.
- The more powerful you are, the more people will project on to you
Though these teachings rang true and set my Soul free, my Self had still not completely come onboard with my higher conscious ‘Soul self’ to call the shots. It still argued and doubted, put up resistance. So, to really drive the point in, the Divine finally took matters in hand and nailed me to the floor. During a spiritual ceremony where I was in an expanded state of consciousness, Divine intelligence entered my body and brought a very deep teaching related to my life purpose. The teachings did not come as a nice and smooth whisper in my ear, but with strong energy and guidance that brought out both sounds, gestures and body movement in me, which I can only imagine was a performance worthy of Broadway. For me, who was present in the experience, I knew the importance and significance of what was happening, and knew I had to let this Divine intelligence flow through me and for me to flow with it. But another unexpected teaching came along with it.
As the ceremony finished, I realized that other people had been very occupied with my experience. And not only that, they all had different opinions and judgments about what had happened. This came to my attention as some curious and well-meaning people approached me with guidance and questions.
However, it was not until a friend of mine had the courage to share with me me how she had judged me out of fear in herself – but also how a lot of other people had been talking about it behind my back - that the penny finally dropped.
All of my being finally realized that no matter what we - or at least I - do, how Divine we show up, and how much we know the real truth of our experience, people will still bring their distorted projections onto us.
One person was sure a negative entity had occupied my body, another thought that I did it to bring attention on myself, someone had felt really scared and angry with me for disturbing his own process, another person thought he was the source of my experience and his presence had evoked it in me, another thought I had received a massive healing, another had felt really annoyed with the space I took up in the room….And I could go on.
So many opinions and projections. But none of them knew the truth. Or had even asked about it.
Only 2 people out of many had recognized the truth of the experience - as it turned out, they were playing in the same league as me. Not in a higher or better league, but in the same league. And even if they hadn’t, it didn’t matter. Because I knew, and it was a Truth that finally no part of my being could argue with.
And if I had not stirred up other people’s shit, they wouldn’t have received the opportunity to get in touch with their own shadows, limited self and fears. So, what has been one of my biggest struggles, I realized is also my biggest gift. On top of having developed a huge capacity for holding space for my client’s deep transformation, my journey has given me the power to stand in my TRUTH so others can get in contact with where they are avoiding their own.
I will always care, but now I know this
If you came this far in the reading, my hope is that me sharing some of my story will inspire you to take back any power you have given or give to other people’s opinions, views, judgments, likes or dislikes about you and your life. They hold no or very little truth. We can often find wisdom in it, though it is maybe not what we think. And it is good to check in with oneself to see if there is feedback we can use. Then take what you feel is useful, let the rest go.
When we take our power back, we might have to leave someone behind, we might have to take shit, we might have to stand alone. It takes courage. It takes self-care. But we will land on our feet, stronger and more authentic. The rougher your path, the bigger the healing, the greater capacity you develop. And along the way people will show up for support – even If it is only for a while.
A part of me will always care what people think about me. I am a social being, who want to be with others and serve others. And from time to time, my Self makes noise when I’m about to launch new things, get out of my comfort zone and take bigger steps in my journey. But I now recognize when I have let my fearful Self take over the steering wheel, and I put my Soul in charge again, so that nothing gets in the way of creating my own experience based on my Soul’s desires. I wish for you to do the same.