Here's a great little phrase somebody told me long ago about the value of another's opinion. It was put in this context:
"When you're 18, you're certain everybody is thinking about you.
When you're 40, you don't care what anybody is thinking about you.
And when you're 60, you realize that nobody was thinking about you...
...they were all thinking about themselves."
This is a general truth about life. When I lecture to junior high students or adults of every stripe, particularly about Love and Communications, I do this small little exercise. I tell them that I am going to turn my back to them, then tell the group I will name five colors. If any of them are wearing those colors, not counting their underwear, raise their hands.
Here are the colors: White, Black, Blue, Gray, Brown.
When I turn back to the crowd, everybody has their hands in the air.
What I surmise is that nobody wants to stand out. Nobody wants to look differently than anybody else because everybody wants to fit in. One of our primary ego mechanisms is to avoid criticism from another.
This suppresses creativity. And individuality. And the expression of your heart.
Nobody cares. At worst, people make their instantaneous judgments and move on to thinking about their financial situation, what they're going to have for lunch, and where they left their keys.
Do not allow a passing thought or expression keep you from being you.
Wear orange. Dye your hair. Put sparkles on your shoes. Wear blue jeans daily. Sing in your car. Ask people how they're doing. Smile at strangers. Smile and keep your shoulders back. And laugh at everything you can.
Be. You. Now