How to Not Be Swayed by Others

Are you easily swayed by what others do or say?

If so, I might try to convince you to give me your shoes, or to close up your bank accounts and savings accounts and hand me 75% of the proceeds. Maybe pick me up a nice vacation too. Somewhere hot and on the water with good shrimp.

You get to keep a whopping 25%, everyone's talking about how great it is to downsize, and this tiny house trend might be a great thing for you. Plus, you get to know you've done something amazing for me, which makes you a good person.

I might try that, but I won't, because that would make me a dick.

Being easily swayed means you're more inclined to bend to the will and wishes of others, often sacrificing what you want. Not only is that no fun at all, routinely falling in line behind other people will also destroy your confidence.

Here then, are three ways to not be easily swayed.

1. Your job isn't to please everyone

You're swayed by others for a number of reasons. Because you don't want to rock the boat. Because you want an easy life. Because you don't like conflict. Many more. And behind a lot of these reasons is the desire to please someone.

If you keep those around you happy and do what they need/want you to do, the reasoning goes, then you won't be singled out, judged or rejected. In this way your desire to be safe will always mean you're swayed by others.

But it's not your job to please everyone around you, nor is it your job to fit in with their expectations.

Your job, quite simply, is to be who you already are.

I get that the desire to not be singled out, judged or rejected is compelling. Nobody wants those things. But the pursuit of safety over self-efficacy comes at a huge cost.

So when you spot that desire bubbling up, ask yourself, "What decision would I make if I didn't need to worry about being singled out, judged or rejected?"

2.Know your insides

Inside you, somewhere down deep, is some pretty extraordinary stuff that tells you what you need to know.

Your mind tells you how far you’ve come, how much you’ve already achieved and shows you just how capable you are when you choose to be.

Your heart tells you what truly matters, what you care about, what resonates deeply, and shows you how to stand up for those things.

And your gut tells you what’s right for you, which direction your North lies, and shows you what you can and can’t condone, and can and can't compromise on.

These things you have inside you? They’re rare, tangible and magnificent. And they’re all yours. Lean into them. Trust them. Use them.

Because the more you know your insides, the more power you retain and the more unlikely it is that you'll be swayed.

3.Exercise your rights

As a whole, unique human being, you have certain rights. Among them is your right to hold an idea, have an opinion, bring your experience, and provide your voice.

Withholding your right to be a whole, unique human being is only ever going to diminish your standing and shrink down your life so it fits neatly into a box labelled "safe".

So if you find yourself easily swayed by others, look at what rights you've given up. What beliefs are you compromising, what ideas are you repressing, and how are you not using your voice?

Because exercising your right to be a whole, unique human being, and exercising your right to show up as you already are, is what confidence looks like.

Don't confuse being not easily swayed with rigidity

One thing to remember here. Not being swayed does not mean that you can't become more informed, and it doesn't mean that you can't change your mind.

Don't stick doggedly to an opinion and conflate that with being not being swayed or being confident. That's nothing more than stubbornness, arrogance and bluster. It has nothing to do with confidence.

Being not easily swayed does not preclude growth, learning or adaptation.

You're free to hear other people. You're free to change your mind. You're free to choose.

Confidence is simply knowing that you can do those things without the need to fit in.


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