Help a partner who increasingly seeks the approval of others

Do you know the scathing comment: “He’s just being himself.” Yes, somebody who is mocked by others is being himself. For that matter, what else should he be? Every self-confident man is being himself. Because he is living a life which does not belong to anyone else. Nobody else is responsible for the mistakes in his life. Only he himself is. That is why, if somebody is being himself, he does not feel obliged to please anyone else. Anyway, it is not in his power. There is no person with whom everybody agrees. It is impossible to please everyone. In order to make everyone agree with you, you would have to constantly change according to the attitudes of the individuals you encounter, one by one. With each new person, you would have to focus on that person and never on yourself.
On the contrary, whenever you free yourself of the tendency to please everybody, you narrow down the important persons within your circle only to the few individuals closest to you, the ones you care about most in your life. These are called friends and family. You easily know that they trust and respect you. Because they do not really care what you aim at or what you strive for – as long as it is your ambition, your wish, your path, and you really want to have that experience. Then they stand unconditionally behind you. In any case, close enough to provide rescue in case something bad happens. They have no need to manipulate you. To change you. To solve your problems. And yet they are always at hand, supporting you. Not so that you can do things according to their ideas, but because you do things according to your own. Which is exactly what your partner should hear in the first place: support your partner on his path, whatever that is.
Petr Casanova
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