Wednesday, September 12, 2012
You have been busy for the past few days, inundating me with your conversations in my mind. Discussions, arguments, perhaps even debates. And they went something like this...
OMG, what will people think of me?
Why do you care so much about what other people think of you?
My imagination goes into overdrive whenever I do something unintentionally stupid. Or worse, I do something stupid and don't even realize it. I think I've spent my entire life trying to be aware of what I do so I won't come off as a clueless person. So when I think I may have 'just been clueless', I become undone, because I cannot undo what I just did.
And who are these people?
Mostly people on the internet--Facebook, Twitter, blogs, social media in general. Sometimes people in real life.
But the social media peeps are just 'out there'--strangers, even--on the internet. Why should what they think affect you?
That's a good question. Because I care? Because I fear being judged unfairly? Because what I say or write on the Interwebz reflects who I am? Because once it's out there, it's out there! You can't take anything back on the Interwebz! And just because I feel very strongly about certain things doesn't necessarily make me very articulate about them, and I end up with my foot in my mouth and that bothers me to no end. So basically I feel trapped because I can't express what I want to say. So I feel lost and frustrated and stumped and beaten.
But you're not trying to make people change their minds or anything, right?
No, I'm not. I just want to make myself clear, but I sometimes I can't. And then sometimes I admit that I don't even know all the facts, which makes me even more of an ass. I don't even mind admitting that, but it doesn't stop me from feeling frustrated about myself.
But nobody knows everything! People live and learn, and are always adding to their life experiences. You can't expect to always know it all or have an answer to everything!
I know, I know. One time I completely missed a crucial reference on a blog post and subsequently made a comment that clearly reflected my lack of knowledge. I felt like such a schmuck. No, actually, I'm sure that's happened many times. I've had panic attacks over blog comments, Facebook posts, Twitter conversations, what have you. It's definitely something I'm trying to get over, but it's hard. I can't control what other people think of me, and that's a very hard thing to come to terms with.
Precisely. Because you have no control over it, you should stop obsessing. Why bother stressing out over something you have no control of? You're just wasting your time! You're not the only schmuck on the internet, you know. Move on!
Geez, thanks. But if only I could...
No, no, no. You can't. That is not in your power. People think whatever they want to think. You think however you want to think. People are different. Embrace the differences. You just have to trust that even if people think differently, people can still respect one another as human beings.
That's having a lot of faith.
Yes, it is. It's very tiring wondering about what other people think all the time, isn't it?
Yes. Maybe I should just quit social media. Kidding.
So you'll just have to let it go to rest, add some New Ingredients to your Life Experience Recipe, and move on.
Okay. But that's easier said than done.
Yes, it is. Didn't you recently write about your perfectionist tendencies and how in order to remedy that, you should follow the words you would preach to the people you love? Well, perfect example RIGHT HERE. Believe my words, and stop with your double standards.
Oh, okay (*sheepish grin*).
So, Dear Inner Voices, thank you for your conversations--albeit being ever so annoying since it carried on for days--to set me straight again. I wavered between your two voices long enough. (To be fair, one of the voices usually gets coached from Dear Husband or a Dear Friend--which is something we all need in times of uncertainty and fear. It is often to their credit that I am ever sane once again.) Please keep up the conversations during my times of need.
Because I'm insecure that way.