Human nature drives us to satisfy the desire to belong to a social group. Whether it is our family, our group of friends, at work, we tend to do things to feel that we belong to a group and thus feel safe.
Having this need is normal. That we take certain attitudes or customs to strengthen ties is fine. But sometimes this attitude becomes extreme and we begin to feel that we need continually the approval of others to do things, or make decisions or be of such or such a form. This extreme need is not healthy and it annuls us as individuals.
Let’s review some reasons why it is not good to always seek the approval of others.
Why it is not good to always seek the approval of others
These are some reasons why it is harmful to always be aware of what others think of us.
1. It generates anxiety
When we feel constantly judged and this affects us, we then seek the approval of others to eliminate that negative judgment; However, even when we obtain approval, we do not leave aside the perception that others are criticizing us and we constantly seek approval.
This vicious circle generates anxiety. We find ourselves in constant stress until we feel that we have never satisfied others and, far from giving up trying, we worry more about seeking social approval.
2. We lose freedom
Our decisions stop being ours to become the decision of others about us. This is losing freedom, because we are not exercising our capacity for decision, which is the result of the internal voice that tells us what it wants to do and where to go, to give way to the external voice that tells us where to go.
If we are guided only by the opinion of others about our lives, we will be allowing all the limiting barriers of society to impose themselves on us, and we will stop acting in freedom.
3. We feel exhausted
Living with the constant tension of doing things according to the wishes of others is very exhausting.
Mentally it is very tired to be thinking about what others are going to think if we act in such a way, and very devastating when what we do is not approved by others and that affects us greatly. This ends up manifesting physically and we begin to feel exhaustion, which translates into weighing on the back and lack of energy to do everyday things.
4. Decrease confidence in ourselves
When we make decisions and these are favorable, we acquire security in us. If these decisions do not turn out as we expected, this security is diminished, but assuming the consequences of a bad decision allows us to regain confidence and try again.
This helps us to acquire self-confidence and self-sufficiency, allowing us to go through life with greater security. Need the constant approval of others makes us feel that we could not do anything without the affirmation of others, and that our achievements are not the result of our effort or good action; but from the outside.
5. We forget our needs
To make a decision we must consider, among other things, our wishes and needs. But if we are seeking the approval of others, we forget that and give way to the tastes and desires of others.
This is causing us to face a decision we have to make, rather than thinking about what could work well, we give others the power to decide and at this point we will have forgotten what our needs were.
6. We stop understanding that there are different ways of seeing life
We become what we do not like, and we stop understanding that there is a difference of opinions and we feel that the others; those who make decisions that are alien to what the group dictates are wrong and we distrust them and judge them.
To think that we must decide based on the approval of others results in losing sight of the breadth of visions and opinions that exist about an event or life itself.
7. We feel the center of the universe
When we seek the approval of others it is because we feel that our life decisions are in the eye of all and will be judged and approved or disapproved. This is because we believe that everyone is watching us and reviewing each step.
Feeling this way generates so much anxiety that we prefer to ask the opinion of others continuously rather than to feel that everyone around judges our decisions.
8. We lose authenticity
Showing ourselves to others as we are becomes impossible. We hide our opinions and feelings. We even get to dress in a different way than we would like, or we say we adapt because in reality we are in constant need of having the approval of others. With this attitude, we stop being authentic. We get lost in the sea of the opinions of others and we no longer know who we really are.
To stop being ourselves is undoubtedly one of the most powerful reasons why we should not constantly seek the approval of others.