Why do you want the approval of others who don’t even approve of themselves?

Guy Finley

Last week, Instagram’s Adam Mosseri announced that it will begin testing a new feature – removing the # of likes on posts. Their reasoning: wanting users to focus on content, not the number of likes each post receives.

This would mean that it would ease some of the pain from constantly making social comparisons, as well as the unfortunate consequences of seeking approval from others, measuring oneself by the number of likes on each post, etc.

For as long as modern civilization has been established,

society has perpetuated this notion that we can only find happiness outside of ourselves.

The conditioning starts at a very young age – bedtime stories, disney movies, toys – they all teach little ones that there’s knight in shining armor that comes to save a damsel in distress, or that the knight is worth nothing if he can’t save this so called damsel.

In schools, we’re taught that there’s only one way to solve a math problem correctly, and that if we fall out of line and don’t follow structures and routines set by adults (someone who knows better than us), we’re punished.

Because we’re constantly told by well-intending parents, teachers, and order-preserving societies at large that someone else outside of ourselves either knows better or will save us, we’re gently molded to think of ourselves in the context of the outside world as being dependent on others – what I like to call a victim mentality.

The victim mentality unfolds in such a way that we waste the only thing we can never get back: time.

We wait for someone to finally make happily-ever-after possible.

We wait for encouragement to shoot for the stars.

We wait for our posts on social media to receive x-number of likes to feel the peace of being good enough.

Consider it: do you put your life on pause because you’ve been conditioned to believe this reality is outside-in, vs. inside-out? How much life do you squander away waiting for it to be the right time, the right person, or the right circumstances to finally be happy and satisfied?

For example, do you spend the majority of your year waiting for that vacation to Venice?

Or perhaps, you have a dream of opening a zen-based gluten-free bakery with sprinkles and frosting, but never seem to have enough money, or you tell yourself it can wait till the kids are off to college.

If you’re waiting, you’ve unfortunately caught the victim-mentality virus. How do you cure yourself of this chronic illness?


Bring it back to you.

  1. What’s your responsibility in this? If you’re waiting, it means you’ve denied any responsibility – and power – in your current situation and life. How do you take back your power? What is something – just one thing – that you can do?
  2. How can you take care of your soul-temple (your body) to increase energy and enhance performance? You don’t have to do anything drastic. Start with a light stretch. Your lymphatic system (the body’s garbage/sewage lines), unfortunately doesn’t have a pump like your cardiovascular system. Light stretching helps flush toxins from sitting stagnant in your body. It also increases flexibility – marker of youth and young age. Take care of you: this body you’re living in is all you’ve got and it’s your sole responsibility.
  3. Where’s the freedom from this? Focus on where your growth will take place when you step into your power and onto your throne. The only lasting happiness that exists comes to make a home in your heartspace when you’re focused on taking care of yourself. Paradoxically, you’ll find that putting yourself first gives permission to others in your life to do the same, removing any need for codependency (not the same as interdependent living and relationships). Freedom is one of the greatest and most expansive ways of feeling, second only to love – and you can’t have freedom where codependent relationships exist.

What one way can you enhance your life today to increase freedom and sense of empowerment?

Live with intention. Inspire with Love.