“If an action or utterance is appropriate, then it’s appropriate for you. Don’t be put off by other people’s comments and criticism. If it’s right to say or do it, then it’s the right thing for you to do or say.
The others obey their own lead, follow their own impulses. Don’t be distracted. Keep walking. Follow your own nature, and follow Nature—along the road they share.”
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations, Book 5, Section 3)
So much of our daily life is spent navigating the social and societal consequences of our actions. Which in itself is based on our survival, and need for living within the bounds of a society. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t survive long in the harsh wilderness of the Australian Outback or the Wild Frozen Norths of Canada. But, coming back to the topic of the consequences of our actions; more often than not people don’t really care what we do or don’t do.
It’s just a fact of life that most of our actions go unnoticed by the world at large. So, whether we act or do not act; putting stock into what others think of us it is a waste of time and energy. Most of us have a pretty good understanding of, “If it’s right to say or do it, then it’s the right thing for you to do or say.”. It’s the matter of moving past the opinions of others that is where we get stumped. Sometimes the very people who are supposed to lift you up will be the ones to hold you to a place of stagnation from which you are trying to lift yourself from. And, that’s okay. Because if you continue to practice living life within the bounds of the right way for yourself eventually you will move past the criticism.
Marcus Aurelius stated, “Follow your own nature, and follow Nature—along the road they share.”; living in accordance with your own nature undisturbed by outside forces is a practice that can alleviate much of the mental, emotional, and physical burden of carrying other people’s opinions of you. In the end you’re the only one who can live your life. So, you should do so within the means you choose.