Are you fearful of other people’s opinions and does this hold you back regularly?

Have you heard of FOPO? It is the Fear of Other People’s Opinions

Why not make 2021 your year to consciously take back control of FOPO?

Ask yourself these questions:

1. Do I make decisions based on a concern of what others think?

2. Have I missed out on an opportunity because I have been too afraid to speak up?

3. Has that little voice in my head held me back for fear of being judged by others?

If you answered yes to any of these, then you are not alone. Studies highlight a craving for social approval made our ancestors cautious and savvy; thousands of years ago, if the responsibility for the failed hunt fell on your shoulders, your place in the tribe could be threatened.

Here are some ways to help you navigate FOPO:

Create regular positive self-talk and reflect on it often

Positive self-talk and learning tactics to bring your mind out of the ancient brain and into your frontal lobe is a proactive first step. This part of the brain is like your control panel, things like problem solving, emotional expression and judgment sit here. Reflection is also controlled by your frontal lobe and can assist you with looking at what worked in the past, what didn’t and gives you the opportunity to make conscious changes to assist in the future. When you find yourself drawn into negative self-talk, adjust the volume, refocus this noise and change the chatter to what you can control or influence. Some people describe the little voice as not just a voice but a whole village having a say internally. We can reprogram this, it takes effort and conscious thinking.

Understand your core values and be more self-aware

Another area to consider is understanding your core values. What we also know is when we truly start living authentically and having alignment between our core values and what we do every day we build our resilience. Our resilience supports us when we are being challenged or in times of change, by helping us to “bounce back”. We often take this for granted and don’t spend enough time considering what our core values are. Does the phrase “that has just pushed my buttons” resonate with you? If it does this is because these ‘buttons’ often relate to your values which are important, such as trust. Spend more time being aware of these triggers, they could be holding you back.

Appreciate your strengths and use them to support building resilience.

“A strength is not simply defined as something that you are good at. It also needs to be an activity that you are instinctively drawn to, that makes you feel successful when you do it and which seems to fill an innate need” – Kathryn McEwen

Knowing and using your strengths everyday helps build personal resilience and develop a stronger and much deeper sense of who you are. They can be your compass, guiding your actions, thoughts, and decisions. By using your strengths each day and being consciously aware of them you are helping build your individual resilience. This in turn assists with positive self-talk and guides your internal compass.

Consider your strengths, are you using them every day? Write them down and reflect on how to utilise them.

Surround yourself with people you trust- Develop and maintain personal and professional support networks

Seek feedback from those you trust, hold their views in high regard, letting the noise from the crowd fade away. Calibrate their feedback with your experience.

Consider how you are creating positive inner talk when you find yourself in challenging situations, give yourself an internal break, shut down that internal village.

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