FOPO: Fear of People’s Opinion

Adwan
2 min readJun 5, 2024

Imagine being in a hectic working environment, where deadlines are looming and office politics are always at play. In this environment, there’s unspoken worry that many people have: FOPO, or the Fear Of People’s Opinions. Picture a meeting room full of eager folks sharing their ideas, all secretly wondering, “Will they like it? Will they judge me?”.

It’s kinda like getting lost in your own head, you know? You start wondering if you’re good enough while also craving validation from others. And that mess can totally blur your ideas or any kind of creativity as well.

Let’s understand what’s going on and come up with ideas to deal with it, okay? Once we do that, we can let our creativity flow and feel great about what we make. Sounds good, huh?

Mindful Presence

First, let’s remember that everyone has their own way of expressing themselves, whether it’s good or bad, and that includes you. You might feel like sharing with a room full of people or deciding to keep things to yourself and think, “Maybe I’ll keep this to myself.” Both options are totally okay.

After thinking about it, you should ask yourself if you want to keep your thoughts to yourself or share them with others. If you’re feeling scared, that’s alright, but how long will you let that fear hold you back?

The Gaps

In your job, you might have tons of meetings or just quick chats. Find the gap — that moment when you can share your thoughts. Remember, you have control over this.

But can you control how people react? Nope, not at all. Got it?

Mini Milestones

Taking small steps opens up numerous possibilities. You can begin by sharing your ideas with just one person, then two, and eventually speaking up in meetings. Remember, progress happens through small actions. Some may feel too shy to speak up, but holding back can hinder personal and professional growth. Start small by sharing whatever comes to mind.

Fearless

Alright, it’s time to take that final step, whether it’s in an online or offline meeting. Feeling nervous before speaking up is normal, it’s just the start of your journey to growth. Remember, you have control over this. It’s okay.

Fear isn’t something to ignore. As you grow, you’ll gain confidence and become stronger. It’s a gradual process, so don’t worry about rushing it.

Listening to people’s opinions helps us grow. As we get older, we learn to filter out the negative and focus on the positive.

Let fear fuel you until it becomes a part of you.

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Adwan

HR professional by day, avid writer by night. Here to share insights, stories, and everything in between.