The Approval Addiction

A lot of us wish for our talents, our intelligence, or our strengths to be recognised, appreciated, and known by others. But we very soon start to rely on these approvals and try to ‘alter’ our lives to fit in within these expectations. Unfortunately, right from here starts a very vicious cycle.

Ever since I was younger, I had an insane obsession with ‘making sure people knew’ I was this or I was that. My mood, my emotions, and my feelings were a dangerously direct reflection of what others thought of me. It got to the point where I got excessively dependent on ‘approval’. If people praised me, I would feel empowered. If people criticised me, I would feel anxious. And if people insulted me, I would start to look down on myself.

A common example I often look back at are the times wherein I felt the immense pleasure when my teachers would praise me, when my friends would praise me, and how I’d feel so superior when I beat someone’s highest score in class. Conversely, how I would grow wild with angst when others performed better than me. Not only because I didn’t do well, but because others now saw that. But I now think to myself, why did the opinions of others matter to me so greatly? At the end of the day, we live to push our limits, and reach our goals. And none of that should have to change based on the views of the people around us. I was reading the book Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by David Burns, and it made me realise how I had made it a habit to evaluate myself through the eyes of others. I now see that I can be so much more than that.

It can be enjoyable to have someone approve of us, but I don’t think we need this approval to be able to love and respect ourselves. Likewise, disapproval can be uncomfortable and it can make our life feel sour and rotten. But it doesn’t make us any less of a person. When we give our power over to others, we lose out on who we really are, and the only reality we then see is how we believe others see us.

⁃ SaaniaSparkle 🧚🏻‍♀️

271 thoughts on “The Approval Addiction

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  2. Great post. I have a tough time with this as well! So tough to rely on ourselves for our opinions of ourselves. I started writing love letters to me once a week or so and that helped a lot.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. The greatest fear people face is death. The second greatest fear almost everyone faces is “What will people think of me?” A friend noted to me once that as we preen and polish ourselves from our hair to our toenails, if we realized how LITTLE other people noticed us, THAT would really upset us! 🙂

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  4. Indeed we do look down on ourselves, but only for a bit. We usually surprise even ourselves sometimes when we do something well and are able to savour that, but also only for a bit. Uncomfortable is awful but it does propel one to another height or goal. Sometimes our greatest selves is only known by God. Man is entirely unaware of our struggle to become someone whole. It is all fluid. Like waves breaking on the beach. We keep going back to fill ourselves again only to crash again on the beach. Sometimes we are glad of the barefeet we fall about, and sometimes it is good to crash on a deserted beach with no one seeing us. Life is great while it keeps doing that. Then you get to an age when one prefers the deep and communing with silent swells and calm days while the young keep coming and going about their business of the day. Keep the faith. Angels keep the score cards. One day the books will be opened and we will see all our good deeds and bad. As long as we intend good things I think God smiles upon us. Love and Light.

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  5. What others think about us does not make us great, what we think about our own self counts a lot. Making comparison or getting undue worried when somebody criticizes us. Therefore, balance in all situations and conditions is required. Approval from others is not that important as self approval.

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    1. “Wow- all this new is gr8 joy, memos do come in handy like surprise others as well.. 11/9 Nov. Mon.…” Oh, yes. And, alas, I’ve been there.

      ok,… Blue!… living inside journal street,? I’ll be aware–

      mass what’s going; setts do … ahu! slept

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      Real then seemed, of,…. antagonize euphoria, NJ — A —

      ���� tell m3 why does it even matter

      “Incomplete? ‘ I ‘ preyed – Appreciate All The Eyes, I Thought Back-, thinking beat which friendly- thick deep pawn…” “11/9 Nov. Mon. 2020 6:57pm imagery��{ Day-Light Savings Dawn- 3nding } “Script lyric” Last Minute; D3co’s’Pear Relax I could… […]…”

      “Wow- all this new is gr8 joy, memos do come in handy like surprise others as well.. 11/9 Nov. Mon.…””Better???”

      this one

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      Beautiful words

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      Daria Nicolodi dies at 70—

      Ronna has had an extremely rough past, including an extensive history of parental abuse that has left her thin-skinned and suspicious of authority figures. Because of this, she’s constantly butting heads with our management team and confronting them about perceived slights.

      While some of the points she makes are reasonable, many are taken too personally or blown way out of proportion, and she tends to act very dramatic/livid about it. I’m looking to move up in the company, and I’m torn between loyalty to my friend and the need to remain on good terms with our higher-ups. I’m also worried that my friendliness with management will lead to Ronna resenting or distrusting me. How can I safely navigate? — IN THE MIDDLE IN COLORADO

      DEAR IN THE MIDDLE: Do not involve yourself in Ronna’s problems on the job. If you do, they will spill over onto you. Maintain your personal relationship with her away from the office, while networking and trying to widen your circle of friends.

      From what you have written, I doubt that Ronna will be working for your employer much longer. Workers who react in a “very dramatic/livid” manner are usually laid off because their behavior is unprofessional and disruptive. Lyrics on a high note concerned about more then just one Homicidal Scisidel

      Like

  6. This was a really great post, thank you for writing it. I have struggled not so much with the approval of others as with the approval from myself. I think sometimes both can be equally destructive. Your post inspired my recent writing and I made sure to mention you and link back to your blog. Best wishes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Loved the closing lines of the verse and I quote:

      “I restore these memories
      With the delight that they give, DEAR IN THE MIDDLE: including extensive … hounoring… rough!! she tends to act very dramatic/livid…

      — Barbara??? problems on the job. { she } networking – our ” distrusting Lyrics

      concerned ‘alter’ […] about more then, I’m torn “very dramatic/livid” creasy– friend: less?? just one whom thinned: crowded in:,? Valued -=– extremely {per}ceived with hurs gone between 3:55am…

      silenced from closure spelled off… A psychologist shoot death – shook..

      it’s ” Homiside Sui- cide, less talents awake— My shadows grey, aware of clouds { Day-Light Savings Dawn- 3nding }

      that colour shimmers: lovely eyes – Sat. 12-15-2020 22,00 2120 9:00pm Dec

      anyone notice? Me: those Asylums creating blow Figuring similar war hero’s: Dear, Script Me For. -” Let Them All Talk ”

      W3 will be: On3 said… ”happy lashing”!

      Soon must they… extricating, ok it

      dear black coffee: she was m3– clean; not very kept — points she makes are reasonable, many are taken too personally or blown way out of proportion, How can I safely navigate? — IN THE MIDDLE IN COLORADO

      From what you have written, I doubt that ,. will be working for your employer much longer. must have said, little details, own, fright..

      Workers who react in a “very dramatic/livid” manner are usually laid off because their behavior is unprofessional and disruptive. Lyrics on a?? concerned about more then just one Homicidal Scisidel …. ‘alter’ […]
      I made sure to mention you and link back to your blog. Best wishes.

      Open document settings
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      Like

    2. all stress gone free Limoncello- I’ll be your sober dry drunk rescure for a holiday party… Just buy italian sparkle water but put lemon in it.. No excuse da alcohol’s gone… but ya’ll can shut it about missing bras & under-wear– unless all ya’ll wonna ” ley someone down for dingy baby talk. H3y big mama… Smart ”off the chain” italian girl { Lillian- Surge }Gefällt mir Kommentieren Teilen

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  7. Another great post! As others have pointed out, seeking approval on social media has become an obsession with many. In all honesty I have fallen into that at times as well. I try to remind myself to not care what others think (when it comes to my photography mostly). What is most important and I am happiest when I am proud of my own work. 35 quotes come up when I google “quotes on what others think”, including the one above. I think we need to continually remind ourselves.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Very wise! It took a long time before I realised that other people’s opinions – right or wrong – should not have power over how I felt. And that my opinions were just as valid as theirs. That was the point at which I gained the confidence to speak up for myself and overcome some of the associated anxiety.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. And with social intruding in our lives in a significant way , the need for showing off , seeking approval , sharing everything.. has become an addiction… (Am recovering from this addiction one step at a time ).

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  10. Never let what others think about you rule the way you are yourself. Believe in yourself and do not let the demons called doubt reside in your mind too often. It becomes as tainting as individuals that want to judge your abilities. BE YOU.

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  11. Well…should I be a prisoner cause I cared what inconsiderate fools in the mood think or make of me?nope i will go Micheal scorefield on them escape escape escape till they become my prisoners for falling to depress me.

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  12. People-pleasers can very much relate to this. It’s quite understandable, though. But the solution to overcoming this type of addiction is confidence. That is in one’s self through decision making, preferences, and self-perception.

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  13. whenever we do something, viz writing a blog, or post, we expect someone to at least go thro, because, we dont simply write for the fun of it. it takes good lot of pain to search for each letter on the phone and group them together to make sence. If no one likes to read, at least they could comment or give a remark, so that one can improve or get a moral support.

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  14. The Tao is a great book.
    Wayne Dyer wrote 81 essays based on the 81 verses of the Tao. Its also a great read. Its called change your thoughts, change your life and fits beautifully with your blog🙏🙏🙏

    Like

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