The Need to Be Noticed: How to Break Free from the Opinions of Others

Filed under Self Worth Your Heart on Apr 09 13 by

adored

We have an innate desire to feel as though we are valued by others. If you say it isn’t so, you aren’t being honest! Some of us may appear less affected by peer approval, while others wear their insecurity on their sleeve, but we are all affected by the fear of being overlooked.

Social media doesn’t always help. For some, it just provides another outlet through which we feel rejected by others. Facebook sometimes seems like a competition between thousands of photos, status updates, and links that all scream, “Look at me! I have something to say! Please pay attention to me!” I know I’m not the only one who gets frustrated from time to time when nobody likes my witty remarks or newest glamor shots.

We want our words to carry weight; we long for the influence that we feel we deserve. We want others to value our input, and we hope that the work we produce is useful and meaningful.

The internet isn’t the only place where we cry out for attention. We dress to impress other girls, all the while keeping a mental tally of the compliments we receive on our style, hair, and makeup. We long to be the “it” girl, the one that everyone looks up to and admire for their beauty, fashion sense, and accomplishments. Even those of us who don’t always yearn to be the center of attention have a strong desire to be valued and respected. We want our words to carry weight; we long for the influence that we feel we deserve. We want others to value our input, and we hope that the work we produce is useful and meaningful.

My deepest fear isn’t that I’m not enough; it’s that people won’t notice the good in me. Even if I succeed at what I do, my fear is that it will go unnoticed. When I found myself spewing envy and frustration out of my soul at a vicious rate, I realized that there was something seriously wrong with my motives. Am I doing the things I do because I want people to admire me, or am I doing them because God put them on my heart? Am I more worried about pleasing man, or would I rather please the God who created me to do these works?

You won’t always be able to change the way people see you. The only thing you can do is change your focus.

I found myself on the phone with a friend, suddenly admitting out loud all of my hidden fears and realizing how arrogant and selfish they all were. Ladies, we can’t succeed in our callings if we are so concerned about the opinions of others. Some people will love you, others will hate you, and many will be indifferent. Such is life, and you won’t always be able to change the way people see you. The only thing you can do is change your focus.

GOD ADORES YOU. Did you know that? He looks on you with fondness, and He treasures the works that you do for Him. In this lifetime, many of your good works will be seen only by Him—and that’s okay. When I stop looking at myself and start looking at God, I begin to find a special intimacy in the secrets that are shared by the two of us alone. There are some parts of who I am that only He can truly appreciate—and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

We should be so in love with God that only His opinion matters.

So, the secret to not caring about what others think is to know God. His love is so much more than enough, if only you take the time to seek it. I would challenge you that instead of looking for the admiration of others, pursue deep intimacy with God. When you’re in a relationship with a guy that you really love, suddenly only his opinion of you matters. He thinks you’re beautiful and he sees who you really are, and it’s enough. It should be that way with God. We should be so in love with Him that only His opinion matters.

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Lauren D'Alessandro
As the founder of The You Are Project’s print magazine and blog, Lauren is passionate about developing publications that inspire creativity and action. Lauren is the Editor-in-Chief of You Are REAL and the creator and manager of our website. Her dream is to continue using writing and publications as tools for communicating God’s love to the world. Keep up with her latest endeavors at laurendalessandro.com.
  • brianna

    Loved this one! So true, especially about me!

    • http://www.laurendalessandro.com/ Lauren D’Alessandro

      Thanks Brianna!

  • Bonnie

    Amen! Learning this right now so much! SO good. Thanks for sharing.