The imagined opinions of others

“It never ceases to amaze me: we all love ourselves more than other people, but care more about their opinion than our own. If a god appeared to us—or a wise human being, even—and prohibited us from concealing our thoughts or imagining anything without immediately shouting it out, we wouldn’t make it through a single day. That’s how much we value other people’s opinions—instead of our own.” -Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

We all are a bit crazy. Our minds are so occupied with what others may think of us, how something we do or how we look is being judged by other people. Of course, the reality is others aren’t thinking of us much at all. They are thinking of themselves and how they are being perceived by others. What a ridiculous cycle and what a waste of mental and emotional energy.

The freest people are those who have enough control of their own minds to either block out or be relatively unphased by the imagined opinions of others. Imagine what would be possible if we could free up all that space in our minds that is otherwise occupied by our concern for what other people think.