Should We Really Care What People Think About Us? 

November 14, 2023
Alexandra Kinias

While many agree that a book should not be judged by its cover, it is also important to remember that first impressions last. This contradiction may leave many wondering whether they should behave as they please, and not care how others perceive them, or they should monitor their behavior, especially around strangers who might misinterpret it.  

            First impressions may be deceiving, and the way people behave in certain situations doesn’t always reflect their true selves. But sometimes people are given just this one chance. And a first impression might be all it takes to either open the door for others to want to know them better, or slam it shut in their faces.

            Many say that they don’t care what others think of them. But the truth is that deep inside they do. And even though they don’t admit it, people like to be liked, appreciated and respected. People care about their image, and how it is perceived by others. They try to appeal to others by how they dress, talk, and to impress them with their knowledge and success in life, school or work.

            However, the first thing people have to understand is that in life, no matter what they do or don’t do, there are some who won’t like them, no matter what, and that’s okay. These are the people they don’t need in their lives, anyway. But what about those who they care to include in their lives?

            So, ask yourself, if being who you are, doing what you like to do and behaving the way that pleases you doesn’t bring you the acceptance, appreciation and respect you desire, would you still keep doing what pleases you? Or would you consider adjusting your behavior and attitude to become more appealing, not merely to impress others, but also to improve yourself?

            Think of your attitude and behavior like your personal hygiene. You can choose not to shower or change your clothes, but it’s you to blame if people avoid coming closer to you. 

            You are also free to smoke, but don’t be upset when you meet the person of your dreams who is a nonsmoker and who is not attracted to you in spite of all your good qualities. Your freedom to smoke is equivalent to the other person’s freedom to breathe fresh air. 

            Smoking might be a little sensitive to many, so how about what you wear, what you say, how you talk, behave, or treat others, or what your values are. Many people are turned off by the way some chew a gum. It is your freedom to chew gum any way you like, but don’t be offended that some might not be comfortable in your company. It is not about being judged, it is about how your behavior reflects on the image of those who are in your company. 

            If you want to be respected, respect others. You want to be treated like a lady, behave like one. Many women complain that men no longer behave like gentlemen. But before they throw the blame on men, have they considered that they may not be behaving like ladies themselves. If you behave like a truck driver, you will be treated like one. If you curse like a drunken sailor, that’s who you are going to attract into your circle. In brief, you attract what you reflect. So if you are in a quest for quality, be the quality you are looking for. 

            That doesn’t mean that you pretend to be someone else, but rather strive to become a better version of yourself. Enhance your good qualities and break the bad habits. Let the behaviors of others be the mirror that guides you. Avoid the behaviors that you don’t like to see in others and learn to adopt the ones that you do. 

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