There are many people constantly seeking approval. We seek approval for many reasons, mostly out of insecurities. Many feel getting validated by another gives them worth or recognition. Even though this is just kind of human nature, it is unhealthy. Let’s look into how to stop seeking validation from others.
It is very common for people to get caught into the approval seeking cycle. Sometimes it’s just out of pride. You may put a lot of effort into something and may just want a compliment for your work. Being competitive or stubborn can also cause validation seeking. Someone might have an opinion and seeks validation to prove they are right.
Seeking validation from others is so unhealthy. It is an opening to anxiety and depression. It was bad enough before we got into the era of social media, but now it is atrocious. This topic can be very mixed though. Sometimes, it can be nice to be complimented or appreciated. Some recognition can be helpful and healthy. So why should you stop seeking validation?
Why Do We Seek Validation?
Sadly, there are more people with low self-esteem and a lack of confidence than with. Everyone has opinions, and often they don’t always align with everyone else’s. Low self-esteem, being insecure and having little to no confidence, makes us crave validation.
It is very easy to be self-deprecating, many of us are to a point. Being a perfectionist makes life really hard on many. If you expect too much of yourself, you begin to doubt yourself. It is really all about personalities. We all have one, that is what makes us different from each other.
There are many reasons that cause us to have a lower opinion of ourselves. Many of us are not even aware. Others know but not sure where to begin to improve at. Some of us had childhoods that created a lack of confidence or low self-esteem. There are also those that have external factors like bullies or high demands from others.
No matter the reasons that have caused it, you have to stop seeking validation. I know many feel they need it so they have some worth. But you have to realize, you already have worth without anyone’s approval.
Quite often we need approval from others from a sense of inferiority. It is understandable, many of us look around and see how much better someone else is doing. However, this is an excellent point to make. You should never compare yourself with others. That only brings depression and doubt.
How To Tell If You Are Seeking Validation
There may be things about yourself you are not aware of that cause you to seek validation. You may be aware of a few traits. However, it wouldn’t hurt to take a look below to see if you identify with any of these.
Comparing Yourself To Others
One sign of seeking approval is just what I mentioned, comparison. It isn’t healthy to compare yourself to others. When you look at someone else’s success and feel bad about yourself, you are setting yourself up to fail.
This behavior creates a low self-esteem and a lack of confidence. Once you hit that low, you start needing approval from everyone to feel worth. We all have doubts and fears, that is normal. But when you let them rule your outlook on life and yourself, that is bad.
Everyone’s situations are different. Some are born into money. There are those that are natural at making money or getting things they want. This doesn’t mean you suck. All you have to do is just tell yourself, you are doing the best you can with what you got.
Don’t care what others have or do, it is a waste of time and energy. Just focus on what you can do.
Afraid To Say No
Many have this problem but this one can be tricky. There are just good and nice people that like to help others. I am one of them, I am not helping to get approval or praise. However, there are those that do favors in hopes to get that gold star on their report card.
If you are afraid to say no when asked a favor in fear of disapproval, you got an issue. You may feel that you need to please everyone. Although, in the end, you will be paying the price with physical and emotional exhaustion.
Many of won’t say no in fear of losing friends. But the truth is, if they’re only your friend because you do stuff for them. These people are not really your friends. Boost your confidence and worth by saying no more often. You will start noticing a difference in your outlook to stop seeking validation through favors.
You Take Disagreements And Criticism To Heart
Most everyone hates confrontation and do what they can to avoid it. With that, people tend to just go with whatever is said in conversations. However, if someone doesn’t agree with you, it should be that big of a deal.
In all honesty, you probably are afraid to disagree in fear you will lose their friendship. Or they may find you with little to no value if your opinions aren’t aligned. This is so far from the truth. I agree in avoiding arguments, nothing ever gets accomplished from them. But it is OK to be mature enough to agree to disagree.
You opinion is just as important as anyone else’s, if they don’t align, that’s OK. By trying to agree even when you don’t, you are just going back to a people please. The person that never says no. Again, if someone dislikes you or walks away because a difference of opinion, then you are better off without them.
You may be letting the smallest criticisms take you down. This could be because you are a self-centered narcissistic jerk, that always has to be right. But lets stick to topic and assume you are afraid of losing validation. Criticism can be good. You can’t succeed without failures to learn by.
If you find yourself changing your tone or your opinion in a disagreement, your seeking validation. Stop seeking validation by being “wishy-washy”. It is very unhealthy to alter what you have already said just to try and please someone else’s ideas.
Again, you are seeking approval when you start changing your view on something you already expressed. You may think you are keeping others happy, but really you are coming off as a flake.
If you have an opinion or a point of view, own it. Who care if not everyone agrees. Remember this, not everyone likes the same things. Not everyone likes the color red or the same foods. This makes us unique. If someone has a problem your view doesn’t align with theirs. This just means they are the one with issues.
Not Standing Up For Yourself
From all the above mentioned, this goes hand-in-hand with it. By being afraid to say no, or have a different opinion or view. This is not standing up for yourself. By never saying no, you become a doormat, allowing others to wipe their boots on you.
Being afraid to open your mouth, even when it can benefit you because you feel you’re not worthy. This is wrong on so many levels. You are entitled just as much as anyone else is. Not only should you have your beliefs, you should highly believe in yourself.
Stop seeking validation because you are afraid to go against the grain. Believe in your ideas and back them up by believing in yourself. No one else can truly believe in you if you don’t.
Another attribute of not standing up for yourself is by not saying something when your not satisfied. For example, if something you ordered isn’t correct, you just let it go and take it as is. Perhaps a server brings you food not prepared the way you lie it. By not standing up for yourself, you are just reinforcing you lack of self-worth, Building confidence is the best way out of this behavior.
You may feel you are gaining friends and brownie points by always being sorry. The truth is, you are turning everyone else off. Always being sorry is a huge turnoff in the dating world. But it also is a turn off in everyday life. People that are always being sorry for something, come off as losers. Even creepy really, it definitely shows no confidence.
For all those guys that wonder how the bad-boy always seems to get the girl? This is one key element, they just don’t care. Even though girls find this as a turn on, most everyone does. Not apologizing for everything shows confidence. This of course doesn’t mean you should be mean with no manners. But always being sorry for every little thing you do is annoying, Again, stand up for yourself!!
Not Being Yourself
You may be pretending to be someone else, or be that person that knows everything. This is just trying to be an all-star, the center of attention to gain worth. You should be careful, you may be taken for that self-centered, narcissistic jerk.
No one likes a no it all, and people really can’t stand fakes. When you are going against your personal beliefs just to gain validation and approval. All your doing is selling your values and integrity. You have to be true to who you are. If no one knows the real you, how can anyone ever really like you? So stop seeking validation by being fake.
Gaining Acceptance At The Cost Of Others
There are many insecure people that feel they can build themselves up by cutting someone down. Again, this is a sign of a narcissistic person. However, people seeking validation will often fabricate stories to gain popularity, These stories can even stem into gossiping. Behaving like this only lowers your credibility and will make you untrustworthy.
You may feel the need to point out someone else’s insecurities to redirect others from noticing yours. You may not realize it at the time these moments happen. But by doing things like this, causes you to have regrets. This leads into furthering you lack of self-worth.
You may feel that you deserve or need praise or compliments for your accomplishments. It is always nice to receive compliments, and people should be more generous about giving them. However, you can’t place your worth based on how many compliments you get.
Pay attention , are you trying to lead people into giving you a compliment? Actively seeking praise is a huge sign of needing validation. Getting upset when you don’t get recognition for something is really unhealthy.
How To Stop Seeking Validation
I can go through a whole list of things one would need to do to help stop this insecurity. But in truth, it all comes down to building confidence. I will still go over some tips, but once you build a real confidence in yourself, benefits follow.
Having confidence is key in success. Success in a career, love and personal worth. True confidence fixes all the above attributes. You would no longer seek validation or approval, because you are completely happy with your decisions.
Building self-worth and confidence isn’t going to happen over night. In order to build real confidence, it would be best to understand what caused the lack of. It is important to understand what causes you to be insecure and lack confidence. By understanding, will ensure you don’t fall back into the same behavior.
Look Back To Where This Behavior Began
Insecurities stem from a few main things. Comparing yourself to others can create high anxieties and low-self esteem. Rejection from others can down your mental health. It can cause you to view yourself less than others. Social anxiety is something many people suffer from. From this, you gain a fear of how others view and judge you. On the other end of it is, being a perfectionist. By placing too high of a demand on yourself destroys your confidence.
Having a low self-esteem is the key to having no confidence. The cause of low self-esteem usually can date back to childhood. One of the biggest causes is growing up with unsupportive parents or family. Possibly having to deal with divorce, alcoholics or just a bad family life in general. Any type of negative environment growing up can cause you to doubt yourself. Which in turns becomes a low self-esteem.
Take some time to face those demons, try and find a pattern from then to now. If you view yourself as a loser, you will always be one. Looking for someone else to believe in you so that you can do better is backwards thinking.
You have to overcome all of your past negatives and leave them behind. Focus on things you know really well and things you are good at. By doing so, you can start believing in yourself, confidence will follow.
Set Positive Goals
Make a list of things you want to improve in your life. IT doesn’t even have to be all about you personally. You may have been wanting to clean out your car. Possibly paint your house, little things you have wanted to get done. By accomplishing these types of tasks, cascade into self-worth, which in turn makes you feel good about yourself.
By setting goals and completing them, creates a positive mindset. As you do more for yourself, allows you to grow as an individual. Always doing for everyone else is sweet and nice. However, it is also a trap, favors never seem to end. Nice people that are always helping others are the worst to have a lack of confidence.
There is nothing wrong with taking care of yourself. I don’t mean to be selfish, but this old saying has merit. “It is best to have your own backyard cleaned up before going to help others clean their’s out.”
By doing things for yourself, will strongly help you stop seeking approval from others. After all, that is the goal isn’t it, to break out of a validation seeking mindset?
Don’t Worry About The Outcome
When setting goals, don’t solely bank your entire existence on the outcome. There are so many things in life you have no control over. So if you plant flowers, something you really wanted to do. The flowers die, do not take this as a total failure. If you are wanting a promotion at work. No matter your efforts of trying to get it fail, do not take this to heart.
All that really matters is that you tried, you did what you could. Focus on that you are doing things for yourself. The point is, do not set yourself up to fail and fall back into your past insecurities. Don’t set unrealistic goals, and give yourself the understanding that nothing is guaranteed.
Know and understand that you are always going to face something negative in your life. Just understand that is to be expected and is a part of life. How we deal with the negative, is at least as important as how we deal with life. It is called acceptance, it isn’t easy but it can be done.
Acceptance Of Rejection And Criticism
Acceptance is key to being confident and stop seeking validation. No matter what you do in life, no matter how great it might be. There are always those that do not like you or what you do. Nowadays, that is known as trolls or haters on the internet. You just have to accept, you can’t please everyone, so don’t even try.
You may be turned down by a love interest, or you possibly don’t meet your bosses expectations. These things can be disappointing, although, they are not the end of the world. You tried and that is all that matters. Perhaps your boss has a point, you might be able to do better. So instead of taking criticism as the end game. Learn from it and do better.
It could be that your boss sucks, or that person that turned you down for a date isn’t all that great. Just don’t assume it is your loss or your problem. There are people that want you to feel that their failings are your fault. Learn to identify these types of people.
Just remember, criticism can be a good thing. If the criticism is valid, it will help you learn to do better. Being rejected is really a matter of personal preference. Let’s say a guy is enamored over a beautiful girl. So he ask her out and she says no in a hateful or snobby way. That right there tells you, that you are better off without her. So, don’t take the rejection that you are the loser, take it as a blessing.
The best way to stop seeking validation, is to always keep moving forward.
Believe In Yourself
Believing in yourself is the road to true confidence. You can do things like standing up for yourself. Remember, you have the same rights as anyone else. You have the right to have your own thoughts and feelings. I am not saying go out and start a rally or picket. But your feelings and thoughts are just as important as anyone else.
I know it isn’t always easy to stand in your own cheering section. It is always easy to be critical of yourself, especially if you are a perfectionist. However, there is nothing wrong with acknowledging your successes and accomplishments. As I mentioned earlier, it is the little task you can get done that can help build your self-worth.
If you feel you need someone else to believe in you before you can believe in yourself. Then you have it backwards.
If you’re always seeking validation, wanting approval or need praise in the things you do or the way you live. You will never fully believe in yourself. To believe in yourself means you don’t care what others think. I don’t mean that harshly or you should be uncaring. But if you think a certain way, stick by it, don’t let others tell you different. Once you accomplish this, confidence follows.
Confidence is key to success in all aspects of your life. Having confidence also means you know yourself. To know who you are, to really know yourself means you no longer seek validation from anyone. You are not alone, life is what you make it. So make it a great one!!!