It’s a big question, not a trivial matter.
A lot of people go every day, with almost every thought on what the others say or think.
We have a lot of assumptions throughout the day, pay attention to your thoughts. Most of the time it is whether or not the thing you say, think, act will be taken in a good way by others; How others will perceive it, if others are doing the same.
We have a strong survival instinct in our brain that work on that (*below explanation). This mechanism makes sure that we are aligned with our tribe, it is hardwired in our social brain.
There are soul-free spirits that seem as if they do not give a fuck. They look always secure and confident, in their body language, words and thoughts. They will react in peace and calm to almost any situation, conversation or debate. I call them people with Zen :) I even knew a manager in a big corporate who always looked like that.
There is a way that comes from a holistic soul search which drive people to understand, on which things they should give a fuck and on which – it will only be a waste of energy. Actually there are some ways.
One way is to tame the Ego.
Second is to grow your own self-worth and from there – self confidence.
Third is on a spiritual level – to unite with the universe and immerse yourself into things that really matter (Distinguish the wheat from the chaff). It can also be done on a mundane level :)
Forth – Non attachment and minding our own business.
1. Tame the Ego
How do we tame our ego? It’s a subject for a whole new post :) I will probably elaborate on it another time, but the basics can be described shortly:
First you need to notice it, whenever you have a reaction, is it from the ego? Be mindful and aware.
After you are aware of your own ego and when it arise, you can become friends. If you try to fight it – it will probably win. So don’t come to it from resistance.
But moving from friends to boss…
Stop and take a ‘pause & thought’ break instead of reacting automatically to a situation or a saying. During this time of pause, decide if to react from your ego or from a calmer place.
Be in control of your thoughts, reaction and ego.
There are not enough words to describe how imperative this is. All of our negative patterns, limiting believes, assumptions, reactions, emotions, behaviour and life experiences are caused by the disease of not having a self-worth. I call it disease because its implications are devastating.
Build your self-worth. know what you worth. Know that you are worthy. Know that there is a reason you were put up on this planet. Know your goal, your purpose in this life. Know who you really are. Only then – not giving a fuck will come as easy as breathing. You will not even have these kind of thoughts. You know why? Because you rely on yourself, you know what’s good for you, you know what to go away from. You have explored and found and connected to your inner self. And you know that you matter.
From self-worth – comes self-confidence. And with it – the peace and equanimity that will accompany you onward.
3. Distinguish the wheat from the chaff
Of course when we say we want to not give a f**(tired of using this word), there are still things in life we do wish to attend to and give our love and care for. It doesn’t mean that we want to be careless robots.
The universe is vast – our problems are small in comparison. Try to see what worth your energy, and what’s not. Choose your battles. It sounds like clichés but believe me, clichés are often true.
If a thought about other people or someone else makes you think crazy and obsessively, or just doesn’t serve you, ask yourself – how will I feel without it? Will it liberate me and I feel free? Will a weight get off my shoulders? If the answer is yes- this is your choice. This is a battle to drop.
Immerse yourself into things that really matter, be focused on the goal (which you have found in article 2).
When your energy is taken by the more important things – it will bring you more results, and you will forget about giving a f**.
4. Non Attachment & minding your own business
It may sound like repeating the before section but minding your own business here is a different style of work.
The Buddhism says don’t be attached to anything, not good praise nor bad feedback.
Think about it, do you need the praise? You already know what you worth :) Do you need the negativity? You already know what you worth :)
Don’t let the ball be in their court, don’t live according to the reaction/response of other people. Don’t be afraid of their believe system and opinion. It is theirs, not yours. However they react to what you say – is non for you to take (as offense), you can leave it with them.
People act from different frequencies of energy, sometimes you are not in the same frequency.
That is what I mean by minding your own business, and remember that they have their own businesses. Always remember they are driven from their business and not necessarily or entirely about you.
That’s it for now, there is more and more that can be said – but we’ll save some for other posts.
I have to admit, it is very hard to practice all the techniques I mentioned. I am not perfect – and I struggle with all these daily. Sharing with you the advises from different sources – have helped me tremendously – the work is continuous and never ending – but VERY rewarding.
*Explanation about our Social Brain:
"Humans are hardwired to connect with others, and our brains have adapted a nifty way to make sure we do. We have specialized brain cells called mirror neurons - whose sole purpose is to keep track of what other people are thinking, feeling, and doing. These mirror neurons are sprinkled throughout the brain to help us understand the full range of other people's experiences. ...Our sense of self depend on our relationships with others, and in many ways we only know who we are by thinking about other people. Because we include other people in our sense of self, their choices influence our choices. " From the book: The willpower instinct" by Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D.
**Disclaimer: There is a book called "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck" by Mark Manson, I haven't read it yet, but in general idea I think it refers to what I wrote on article 3. In any case, probably a good read ;)