Seeking Approval From Friends?

by Bob Walsh

Are you always seeking approval from friends? This is to a certain degree a normal thing – we want to be accepted by our friends, it is only natural to want to belong to a group of people.

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We as human beings are social animals. We thrive on interacting with other people and everyone of us, no matter how independent we might be, still wishes to belong to a certain group of people. We want to be respected by others. And we do crave the approval of those whom we do respect.

There’s nothing wrong with that. But there is a line. It’s all about balance. If you become dependent upon the approval from friends, if you do things just so that you get the approval from friends even though you wouldn’t otherwise do these things then you are excessively approval seeking.

Ask yourself this question:

Why do we want that approval? What happens if I don’t get that approval? How do I feel? What do I think? What does it do to my sense of self-worth and self confidence?

Exploring the answers to these introspective questions can help you make the next step in becoming less dependent upon approval from friends.

You can’t go through life always telling people what they want to year, or what you think they will want to hear. If you do that you will spend your whole life in a state of social anxiety, where you’re always married about what other people will think of you. What’s more you will feel like a fake. And you will always have that lingering wary somewhere in the back of your mind that it’s all going to come out. That they all will discover what a faker you are. And that marrying and that anxiety will make you feel even more dependent upon the approval from friends.

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Sometimes in life you have to make decisions for which other people will criticize you. You won’t get approval from others for doing these decisions, yet they are the right thing to do for you. After all it’s your life, not theirs.

Dealing with disapproval can be tough at first.

You might feel lonely or even desperate. It might feel like they’re treating you unfairly. But when you work your way through these negative emotions you will get more closely to the core of your true positive identity.

One of the things you can do to stop seeking approval from friends is to start appreciating yourself more, and to give yourself more credit.

For example you can write down at the end of every day what you have done or said today that you feel proud of today, or should feel proud of today. And if you are one of these people who have a really hard time to feel proud about their own accomplishments than no credit like this:

If another person would have done what I did today, and I would have been observing them secretly, for what would I have given them credit? Which of the things that they did today would have earned them my respect?

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