For some reason, validation was a thing I never knew I needed. I’m not talking about the validation of existence or beauty. Rather, it is the validation of my decisions.
Growing up, I was always thrown into leadership positions. Being the eldest in the family and born in January, somehow people look to me for leadership and guidance. So since young, I was always making decisions and setting the direction of growth. Those were good. Simple and easy. It’s second nature, I don’t even think about it anymore.
However, as I continued to grow and have more responsibilities thrown upon me, I started to have doubts. It’s weird, since this is second nature. I guess the doubt starts from never failing and then I start to question myself if I am doing well and doing right. So I started asking people to validate my decisions.
I didn’t know I was doing that! It started off as me wanting other people’s opinions and involving various opinions in my decisions to have the best outcomes. Slowly, it shifted to me getting people’s thoughts and opinions of my decisions and I can feel better of my decisions.
Luckily for me, I met E and he told me about this. It was a shift in perspective and I went “oooooh! Wow I never knew I was doing this.”. While I understand the first step to change is awareness, it still takes time to really complete the change. E was patient and helped me subconsciously.
Safe to say, it took about ~2 years, and I now do not need validation for my decisions anymore!
How to deal with the need of validation
- Recognise you’re looking for external validation. E.g. I need external validation for my decision making
- Ask “why”. And go down the “why” 5 times. Figure out why this external validation means so much. E.g. I need external validation because I am not sure if my decision is the “best” and “right”
- Understand where the fear comes from. E.g. I have doubts of my own abilities (this is stupid) and there is too much responsibilities hinging on my decisions.
- Rationalise the fears. Or ignore them. E.g. I am good enough. I have to trust my abilities, because it is proven time and time again that my abilities are right. As fro responsibilities and uncertainty along the way, we can edit and alter the decisions along the way. The decision I make now, is just a direction forward. It will always be edited and it is not static!
- The next time, have faith and trust the next thing you do, without asking for validation. E.g. I used to ask E for validation. He decided to stop replying me need for validation and I started to trust my own decisions. Also, I stopped myself from asking E for validation, consciously.
- Believe in the thing you do and keep believing, every single day. E.g. I’m much better at making decisions without validation now. I may still ask for opinions, especially if it is client’s work and I need their inputs. But for my life, it’s all good!
There it is. It’s a simple process that takes a while, but the freedom at the end is just liberating and beautiful!