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The Web Sage
Copyright © 2002 by Joe Freeman. All rights reserved.
Why Do You Care?
Do you ever find yourself making decisions based on what other people think, or will think? These decisions range from the clothing we wear, the way our hair is cut, the kind of car we drive, what neighborhood we live in, how much we weigh (or eat!), where we work, where our spouse works, where our children go to school, where we vacation, where we dine, where we shop, etc.

Most of time these decisions are made in order to allow us to ‘fit in’ with ‘in crowd’, to be accepted by the people who are doing these things. Why?

On the reverse side of this process, do you feel ‘left out’ if you are not doing the same things as those you perceive to be the ‘in crowd’? Why?
Many times these decisions are based on our self-esteem. The desire to fit in, to be accepted, is a strong emotion that occurs naturally. We all want and need that connection with other human beings. Dr. John Cloud says that 'our ability to attach is our ability to relate our spiritual and emotional needs to others'. We seek that 'attachment' by trying to be socially accepted, to fit in with the people we identify with the most, or most want to be like. If this emotion is too strong it can drive some unhealthy behavior, such as forsaking whom you really are in order to be accepted as someone you are not.
Do you care what other people think? If you make your decisions based on what is best for you and your family – great! However, if find yourself making decisions (even tiny ones) based on other peoples opinion, give some thought to what is really driving your behavior.

Self-esteem is the reputation
 we acquire with ourselves.

No more duty can be urged upon those who are entering the great theater of life than simple loyalty to their best convictions.

This above all: to thine own self be true,
 And it must follow, as the night the day,
 Thou canst not then be false to any man.