People Aren’t Thinking About You the Way You Are Thinking About You

Mada Hayyas
Raising a Beautiful Mind
2 min readAug 19, 2023


‘Tess if the D’urbervilles’ 2016

There is a term in social psychology called the ‘spotlight effect which refers to our tendency to overestimate how much other people think about us or notice us. The reality is that everyone is so concerned about their own problems/life that they rarely, if ever, spend much time thinking about ours.

How many times have you shrunk yourself because you fear being judged or criticized?

I have a folder in my laptop where I keep encouraging and uplifting messages for myself. They keep me grounded and focused. I wanted to share one I come back to often because it’s relevant: Don’t let others stand in the way of your success. There will be many people who will decide you can’t do something. These people are everywhere, and they may feel impactful in the present moment, but they will not matter soon enough as you progress in your journey. This is your life so stop letting other people decide it for you.

A lot of us tend to play it safe because we fear failing or being rejected. We tell ourselves” I can’t do this” or” I am not good enough” or” there is too much competition”. I think it’s a sign of courage and confidence to go for something that is scary, uncertain, and difficult. So, If your heart is set on doing something that you truly believe in- go for it. If it doesn’t work, at least you tried. Don’t be afraid to take up space. Find the strength to really believe that you belong in every room you walk into. What you have to say is just as important as anyone else in that room. Most importantly, remind yourself that confidence is a skill. It doesn’t happen in leaps. It is slowly learned in small baby steps. There is no shame in asserting yourself in small ways. Consciously do the work every day until you truly believe that you belong in every room you walk into.

Do the same for yourself as you do others-reflect on your best qualities, celebrate your strengths, make yourself laugh, treat yourself to things, nurture your own happiness. Your positive light helps those around you feel cared for. Just remember to serve yourself from time to time the same selfless way that you serve others. To truly give the world your best, you must also treat yourself as your best self.