Healthy Mind

Camilla Dallerup: Don’t Let Other People’s Opinions Stop You

Our motivational guru isn’t letting other people’s opinions stop her from living her best life – here’s why…

I recently watched the Netflix special with Brene Brown [shame and vulnerability researcher], The Call To Courage. It was brilliant in so many ways, but one thing that really resonated with me and reminded me of what I tell my clients over and over again was: ‘be selective with who you accept feedback from’. People are often happy to let you know their opinion, even if they really haven’t even been there themselves or cannot back up their feedback. And, if you listen to everyone, it can actually prevent you from doing some of the things you are capable of and that you know are right for you.

If you decide to go for that promotion at work, for example, some may say you won’t be able to do it but others may be more supportive. What Brene Brown explains in her talk, is that she is not willing to take feedback from someone shouting from the sidelines, but only from those who were trying, and failing – those who were brave and had courage. Those actually in the arena, giving it a go. That makes so much sense to me. No one but you truly knows what you are capable of. Personally, throughout my life as an athlete, the best advice I ever was given was to listen to all of my coaches, but then follow my intuition as to which things to put into practice and to be very selective about who I asked for advice. Too much of someone else’s opinion can leave you more confused than you started. Choose who’s feedback to take on board and which goals are achievable to you.

Try this now: Lean into the unknown

I see every day in my practice, clients who are going through a time of transition and feeling lost or stuck and they feel under pressure to ‘figure it out’ quickly. However, often those times of transition take a while and the best thing we can do is to give ourselves permission to not know all the answers immediately, to lean into the guidance within and to just take it one step at a time. I have created a short meditation for you to use in those moments:

1. Sit somewhere you can relax and close your eyes.

2. Start to focus on the way your breath is flowing through your body.

3. Then start repeating the following sentences silently in your mind:

  • I give myself permission to not know all the answers at once.
  • I surrender to the unknown.
  • I allow myself be guided by my intuition.
  • I am guided, I am safe while I go through this transition.

4. Sit for as long as you need, try and repeat each sentence three times or use them over a few days and pick one-a-day to focus on and then come back and open your eyes when you’re ready.

Telling yourself comforting messages like this, while in a relaxed state can really help you feel less anxious while navigating a challenging time.

What to read this month

The Body Keeps The Score by Bessel Van Der Kolk, M.D

This book is fascinating and one I believe we would all benefit from reading. It delves deep into the topic of our bodies and minds and how trauma can affect how you can heal. Whether you have actually experienced trauma in your own life or not, reading this book will give you a greater understanding and empathy towards someone dealing with trauma and PTSD. This book is filled with information and interesting research and it explains so clearly how our brains work. I personally find the more I understand about how our brains are wired, the easier it gets to make certain changes in our lives and rewire the brain to support us better. There are so many gems in the book, but one of my favourites is when it confirms what I have believed to be true for a long time; the book describes ‘we can pick up on another person’s movement and their emotional state and intentions as well’. It goes on in more detail and explains that when people are in sync with each other, they mirror not only the way they sit, stand and speak, but “our mirror neurons also make us vulnerable to others’ negativity,” which means it can make us respond with anger and make us feel low. For a greater understanding of yourself and others this book is a must-read, in my opinion.

Health & Wellbeing