Impress people? No, you should stop that now.

The Reality of US

How to Impress People?“, did you ever search this phrase on the web? Well, if you do, then high 5! I used to do that too. You see, I was a complete people-pleaser. I always wanted to impress people. If someone disliked me, I used to become very upset. In some cases, I even asked them about their reason for disliking me. Well, they used to give me vague answers, and I tried to fit in the image which would attract them.

I felt like a loser. I felt like a used person. Everywhere I used to go, I felt like people are constantly judging me, laughing at me. On the other hand, I used to be dependent on others too much. I always took decisions based on what others thought. And deep inside, I felt like a powerless undeserving kid. I felt like the trashiest person in the world.

So, if you relate to this too, then you are not alone my friend. Let’s talk about it:

Table of Contents

Why We Want To Impress People

Look, let me tell you a very straightforward fact. No matter how hard you try, you can never be that person who doesn’t need to or want to impress people. It’s almost impossible for a human being to be completely free from the need or want to impress people. Because it’s almost always not the act of impressing people, that matters. What matters is the intention behind why you want to impress someone. See, in my previous story, my intention was pretty simple. I just wanted people to like me. Why? Because it gave me (and still does) a sense of belongingness, a validation. I had less confidence, so when I managed to impress people, I got a confidence boost. And that my friend is the main problem.

Now, it’s no surprise, that we humans love to get validation. It’s not necessarily bad to get validation from people, but it gets unhealthy if you want validation ONLY and obsessively from others. And, this is how your intention behind impressing people becomes unhealthy for your mental health. Because to get that validation, you’ll always do what the other person wants you to do, say what the other person wants to hear, act how the other person wants you to act. This slowly kills your sense of “self”, and one day you might completely lose yourself.

Why “Impress people” To Get Validation Is An Inefficient Way

Let’s say we have a hypothetical guy named Kevin. Now Kevin loves to get validation. But his source of getting validation is other ‘people’. Now, this is problematic for some reasons. Like:

–    There are seven billion (and counting) people out there. Kevin can’t impress all of them. But because he’s so fixated on the idea of impressing someone, he will get hurt, when he fails.

–     People don’t give a damn about Kevin. It’s not they are evil, but because everyone has their own problems, everyone also loves to get validation.

–     Kevin is forgetting that preference is a thing. This thing makes Kevin’s choice of getting validation completely inefficient. Kevin might get rejected because of how he looks, his skin complexion, his nationality, religion, and other gazillions of attributes which Kevin have little to no control. On top of that, generally, people’s preference is based on biases and sometimes prejudices. So, even if Kevin wants to, he can’t do anything about that.

So, if Kevin can’t get a stable flow of validation from impressing others, then why should Kevin even bother?

Is Validation Bad

Well, validation is neither good nor bad. It’s one of the abstract human concepts that we all live with. Validation used to be a big deal for our ancestors. I mean, if you have to survive in a harsh world, where almost anything can kill you, then you’ll need help. And an excellent way to get help is to get integrated into a social group. So, if someone gives you validation, it might mean you are approved in that group. That might increase your chance of survival as well. That is how our brain interprets validation from others. Now in this information age, we might not have the same survival situation, that we used to have. But we still have the same organic brain structure which helped our ancestors to survive. So, our brain still craves validation as much as our ancestor’s brains used to.

Now, validation can be useful in our modern lives too. Let’s say, you like a person or you want a job. Getting validation or no validation from those people, is a clear signal of what you should do next. Does she like you? Great. She doesn’t? Well, let’s move on. Now, you don’t have to impress the girl anymore.

In the end, it’s not about validation being good or bad. It’s about how you prefer to get validation in the first place.

That feeling, right?

So, What To Do Now

If the desire to get validation can’t be completely shoved away and impressing others to get validation is not an efficient way to get validation, then the questions are:

  1. What can we do about it?
  2. And should we completely stop impressing people?

Well, the answer to the first question is pretty simple. Choose other sources to get validation. For example, you can set personal challenges yourself and try to achieve those challenges. Upon completing the challenges, you will get validation because you have done something which you never did. The source of validation also isn’t unstable like other people, because you can control the situation.

Even if you fail, you can try again or at least show yourself that you dared to do something. That way, you also get the same amount of validation and also respect for yourself. And the source is not unstable, as the source is now internal. So, you won’t find yourself constantly worrying about impressing others as you don’t need to impress others anymore.

About the second question, the answer is no.

As we know, impressing someone is not necessarily bad. The intent behind impressing someone matters. So, if you want to impress someone to show them you care, then it’s not a bad thing. Or if you badly need a job, and you have to impress the interviewer to get the job, then impressing is not bad. The bottom line is when you want to impress someone and are in doubt that should you impress or not, try to find your intention.

Ask yourself, why do you want to impress that person? What’s your end goal? Why does it matter to you?

And if you find yourself trying to impress people in general or someone, because they don’t initially like you, then stop. Say to yourself, that it’s a waste of time and move on. Eventually, you will find people who like you because of you. You will find people who will value you, respect you. You just have to stop trying to impress others too much and have faith in yourself.

And the most beautiful thing about it, you will forget about the people who didn’t like you in the first place,

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