How much have other people’s opinion shaped you? How far will you let them affect the way you live your life?
I have always been very sensitive to people’s opinion, and I’ve always judged myself after listening to people’s opinion on me. While the good ones left me elated for days, the bad ones made me question myself.
It took me a long time to realise that an opinion is just one person’s vague idea of someone or something based on their personal experiences. It has nothing to do with the truth of my reality.
Very recently I had read a story about a woman who looked out of her window and saw her neighbours hanging dirty laundry to dry. She complained about this to her husband every day, until one day she cleaned her window. When she looked out through the clean window she realised that her neighbour’s clothes had always been clean, it was her window that needed cleaning.
I have judged myself the harshest after I took on the role of a new mother. Here is my experience as a working mother, and how I let other people push me around.
I have been working in the corporate sector ever since I passed out of college, and been financially independent. Quite naturally after I held the bundle of joy in my arms, I decided impulsively that I would halt my world for her happiness.
So, I spent blissful moments of motherhood just being with my daughter, until one fine day, some one said to me, “Why did you study so hard in the best colleges and gain a corporate experience? Do you mean to throw it all away?”
This opinion made me think. While it broke my heart to even leave my child for a moment, something inside me kept asking – ‘Do you really mean to throw it all away?
Following this, I decided that I would leave my daughter in day care for a full day or with a nanny and join back the workforce. I have attended numerous interviews while taking along my baby in a pram and the nanny following behind me. With every interview I left a piece of my heart back with my chuckling baby who played outside. But the question “Are you going to throw everything away?” remained.
I did bag a couple of jobs.
When I shared my experience of job hunting to people around me, someone again said – “Are you going to leave your infant with a nanny? Is your career really more important than your child’s welfare?”
So, of course I decided that my career was actually not more important. I started to approach various companies that would hire me as a consultant writer. This would give me the flexibility to be at home and keep working at my own pace.
I shared the happy news with the people around me. Again someone said, “What’s the point of working so hard for peanuts when you can get a REAL job and earn ten times the same amount like you did before?”
Other people’s opinion is their idea about something based on their experiences.
While I changed directions listening to people’s opinion, I had never once considered what I really wanted. And I have since realised that every woman has a different life, different choice, different priorities. Based on their situation in life, every single woman is doing what she can do best.
While there are women who would want to work, they may lack the necessary support back at home needed to balance home and work. Then there are those who want to be with their baby every single moment, but need to work to make ends meet. There are still others who might find themselves in a situation where they do not find anything that would work for them.
I have felt insufficient every time I heard a judgement about my choice. But I realise now I should have just asked the ‘people with opinion’ to clean their window, rather than trade my heart’s whispers for their approval.
Image source: YouTube
Every fortnight, we send out a special mailer for working women (or those aspiring to work), with useful resources, tips and ideas. Sign up here to receive this mailer.
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views. Individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times. If you have a complementary or differing point of view, sign up and start sharing your views too!
A Social Media Content Writer by profession. A writer by heart. A genuine foodie. Simple
Believe In Yourself, You’re Your Own Strength – What A Mental Health Seminar Taught Me
The Girl Who Wanted To Grow Up To Become A Pilot, Now Temporarily Impure…
Why I Think Society’s Definition Of The ‘Ideal Couple’ Can Be Dangerous For Women
The Journey [Short Story]
Stay updated with our Weekly Newsletter or Daily Summary - or both!