Sometimes we get so engrossed in listening to others that we may even get confused as to which thought is actually ours. Or is that just me?
Besides, have you noticed that whenever we are trying to make a decision, we tend seek advice and opinions from others, as if the more we get, the better our decision will be. It’s great if everyone tells us the same thing, but what if we receive conflicting advice?
As I was sifting through opinions with the view to identify the best one I received, a deep realisation dawned upon me. In fact, Swami already talked about opinions and criticism here and here. I am sure the realisation was based on an understanding of these alone. So, that day, as I was walking, although it may sound crazy, I told my mind:
Omg! I don’t have to listen to you, oh mind! And all these opinions, they are just other people’s thoughts too! I could never please everyone and everyone will have a different opinion anyway! All based on individual conditioning!
It was a simple realisation or should I say remembrance of Swami’s wisdom, which gave me immense peace of mind. If you like to conserve energy (some people call it lazy), you may enjoy a few bullet points. So, let me sum up how I have decided to rise above opinions and criticism from now on:
1. Opinions don’t necessarily matter.
Although, if it’s the opinion of an authority, then we may have to follow through with it.
2. When someone gives us advice, they are merely sharing their thoughts. Just thoughts.
All based on their upbringing, tendencies, experience and perception.
3. We can never please everyone – some will criticise us and others will appreciate us.
Who’s right and who’s wrong? They’re all thoughts! Ta-da! They only hold as much value as we assign to them.
4. We have the freedom to choose who we want to believe and who we wish to dismiss.
5. It helps to have a principle and someone we look up to, e.g. Om Swami, of course:)
Then we can easily ask ourselves: What would He have done in this situation?
5.1. If in doubt, go get some fresh air and revisit the matter later!
Either their opinions will vanish or you’ll plan revenge on those sharing their wisdom. (Joking)
And that my friend, is the yummy pudding for rising above opinions and criticism. It may taste good, depending on your tastebuds. Oh wait, I already ate it all and it’s in my little belly!:)