The kind words of our peers are amazing fuel for our success when the timing is right. But it all can go downhill pretty fast. Determining your own worth based on what others have to say on the matter is problematic, and there are many facets to this issue. Here is what you need to know if you’re in a similar situation.
Mental Illness and Self-Esteem
It’s no secret that one’s self-esteem is a fragile and sometimes fickle concept. If you’re unsure of your worth, the smallest comments can influence your own perception of yourself. And sadly, people who suffer from mental illness have it the worst.
Unfortunately, struggling with anxiety and depression or going through the phases of schizophrenia impacts your confidence negatively. This leads to patterns of seeking external validation in the opinion of others, either face to face or online. However, this is unhealthy and can be even more damaging in the long run.
While there is nothing wrong with wanting a bit of praise every now and then, there is a thin line between wanting reassuring and seeking constant validation. In fact, continuously looking for the attention and approval from those around you is classified as a personality disorder in itself. It is called histrionic personality disorder, or HPD for short.
People who suffer from it constantly need to be the centerfold of any group, and when that doesn’t happen they experience severe emotional discomfort. Furthermore, they will go to great lengths to achieve the validation they desire.
HPD patients might even engage in dangerous, addictive and promiscuous behavior, which more often than not ends up putting their health and integrity in peril. Their romantic and platonic relationships are either dysfunctional or non-existent, which further puts a strain on their mental state.
Validation vs. True Happiness
Nowadays, trying to get the approval of others has become easier than ever. But seeking validation online or face to face won’t bring you true happiness. This type of behavior often leads to feelings of emptiness and even personality disorders that will be hard to shake off once you fall into their trap.
There are many reasons why the people who have stopped pining for the approval of others are happier souls with brighter, more fulfilled lives. Not only do they feel liberated that their own satisfaction and gratification no longer are at the mercy of their peers, but they are also a lot more in control of their own lives.
Regaining agency is the best thing that you can do for yourself. This makes you more confident and aware of your actions, which is something that you will benefit from in all areas of your life. Not worrying about what others will think of what you do on a daily basis helps relieve anxiety and automatically ensures that your work gets higher success rates.
How to Stop Seeking Attention
Now that we’ve established how beneficial not seeking attention is, the next step is learning how to put an end to these disruptive behavioral tendencies. Here are three valuable concepts that will help you along the way.
The ancient Eastern concept of mindfulness is based on an emphasis on the importance of living in the present. Not only does this involve self-awareness, but also a desire to take charge of your own existence that is beneficial to anyone struggling to determine their worth and purpose in the world.
Accepting yourself for who you truly are is one of those things that is truly easier said than done. Nevertheless, by managing to focus on what makes you beautiful, unique and valuable, you will not only come to terms with many of your issues, but you will also pave the way towards a happier and healthier life.
Discovering everything that the world has to offer is an exciting prospect, and it all starts with practicing unconditional self-love. Show the same amount of praise, kindness, and respect for yourself as you do to others, and great things won’t take too long to come your way. You are an amazing individual, both inside and out, and your contribution to the world is important.
When it comes to the question of whether or not constant validation is enough for long-term happiness, the answer is most definitely a firm ‘no’. In fact, such actions are detrimental to your personal well-being, which is why you need to nip this pattern in the bud and focus on what makes you a wonderful person.
Through mindfulness, acceptance, and self-love, you will be able to shake off the disruptive and damaging behavioral tendencies that have been bringing you down. Your life will be better, and you will be overall happier for it. And that’s the essential thing at the end of the day.