“It’s very important for you to realize that other people’s thoughts, words, actions, behavior, and feelings are not your responsibility. What you think about yourself is more important than what people think about you.” – Richard Feynman
One of the reasons, relationships can become challenging, is that people put other people’s opinions above their own. In the desire to receive other people’s attention and recognition, they will wait for external confirmation and validation. It easily leads to expecting others to support oneself or to do as one expects.
And naturally, the others may do the same, thus adding to the tension of existing expectations in the relationship. Relationships test us.
That is where Richard Feynman’s suggestion is so valuable. It opens the possibility to have enough peace of mind to listen to what others are saying about oneself, without making it our own. That is unless we are learning something valuable in the exchange.
Interestingly, this also allows us to love someone who doesn’t love us back, to forgive others for their flaws, put up appropriate boundaries as well as say, “Yes” when someone really needs us.