‘Careful! It’s very hot’ says the warning on the tea cup I’d been drinking out of earlier on the train ride. I love the scenic view through the dirt-bespeckled window from the Virgin Trains First Class window seat. I am enjoying a great deal of space and freedom – because it’s the weekend, and I get free upgrades on the weekend.
I’ve been tricked as I look out on the horizon. I see white bags weighted with wheat or something like that, I’d imagine. I thought they were sheep for a hot minute, but they’re not. I’m sure the girl opposite me in yellow – bright yellow thin-knitted jumper is thinking I’m a weirdo. I’m just typing but without looking at the screen or the keyboard. Because I’m getting information from the sky; from what I’m seeing out of the window. I want to be inspired without being distracted by what the words on the screen are saying. I want to enter a state of flow. But she probably thinks I’m trying to show off. I’m really not though.
That leads me to think about the discussion I had a few days ago with a friend. He talked about being far too aware about the opinions of others – or rather, as I understand it – his perception of what others may be thinking about him, his behaviour and his personality. I found that pretty interesting. We are all guilty of it though: being too aware of other’s opinions. And often it’s the case that the other person isn’t even considering us at all. They are all too wrapped up in their own world of thinking and worry and anxiety.
Flip it. What if she is thinking that I’m thinking she’s being weird? Maybe she feels that I am judging her brightly-coloured flamingo looking top – which I kind of am. And I feel guilty for that to be honest. So I’ll stop. But she may be thinking that I think she’s being silly because she has asked me about the free wifi and whether I have got it working on my laptop. And I have. But she hasn’t on hers. So maybe she is thinking that I find her silly. She’s not blonde. But maybe she feels judged as a ‘dumb blonde’.
And there are a lot of ‘maybes’ in this conversation (between myself and my laptop) aren’t there? Which is exactly the point. When you start to imagine other’s preconceptions aka misconceptions about you, you are not in touch with reality – theirs or yours. You are questioning and providing potentially inaccurate information, and in fact you are then guilty of prejudging the other person – a position you would not even consider yourself of being in. You are guilty of doing the exact same thing you wouldn’t want them to be doing towards you. Which is pretty funny and ironic actually. (I’m smiling to myself now as I’ve stumbled upon this reality.)
Maybe means that you lack clarity. And a lack of clarity is scary. It’s like looking through a dusty window and expecting to see everything in perfect vision, but you can’t. The picture on the other side will be blurry. But just because it is blurry through your eyes; just because things are distorted in your perception, does not mean that they are distorted in reality. In fact, they probably aren’t. It’s just that you need to wipe the window clean. So grab your duster whenever you start to probe into the mind of another and imagining that they’re thinking horrible judging thoughts about you (as you are doing with them) and then wipe these thoughts completely away. In fact, you may want to spritz a heavy spray of bleach too. It depends how far or deep you are into this self-judgment.
Because that’s what it is essentially. You are judging yourself. Because the thoughts in your head have not come from the person you imagine is judging you, are they? They’re coming from you. So you alone are responsible for limiting yourself by condemning who you are and what you are doing.
Next time you’re caught in this vicious thought cycle, stop. And say this: “nobody cares!” After all, why do we think we are so important and so special to be at the fore of people’s minds anyway? I mean, we are. We are important and special. But not everybody may be aware of this. So let them concentrate on themselves, and you concentrate on you. And keep telling yourself, ‘nobody cares!’ because often it will be you who is the one who cares far too much about being judged, not them!Like, comment, share and subscribe if you wish & check out the rest of my site.