Everyone seeks external validation. It feels yummy to be acknowledged by your peers and those your respect. It doesn’t matter if it is in regard to your selfie or your ideas, it’s normal and healthy to desire praise and acknowledgement.
Where people run into problems, however, is when they equate this external validation with their worth as a person. If your self-worth hinges on external validation, you’re only creating a rollercoaster of emotional distress for yourself because not everyone is going to think positively of you, your image, or your ideas. There are going to be people that try to tear you down, always.
You become a puppet to the subjective lens others have. If they validate you you’re happy. If they don’t you’re depressed.
Instead, you need to look inside yourself to determine your self-worth. Are you happy with where you are at in life, whether it be in your personal progress as a human, relationships, career, etc.
External feedback—be it positive or negative—can help refine your ideas and expressions. It can help you find your own self-worth, but it should never define your self-worth.
As a general rule of thumb, those who are sensitive to negative feedback and critique have low self-esteem or sense of self. They have become reliant on external validation to inform them of their worth.
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