Monday, October 10, 2011

31. Approved!!!

“Favor and disgrace seem alarming.  High status greatly afflicts your person.  Why are favor and disgrace alarming?  Seeking favor is degrading:  alarming when it is gotten, alarming when it is lost.  Why does high status greatly afflict your person?  The reason we have a lot of trouble is that we have selves.  If we had no selves, what trouble would we have?  Man’s true self is eternal, yet he thinks, I am this body and will soon die.  If we have no body, what calamities can we have?  One who sees himself as everything is fit to be guardian of the world.  One who loves himself as everyone is fit to be teacher of the world.” 
(Wayne Dyer’s interpretation of the 13th Verse of the Tao TeChing. Taken from "Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life: Living The Wisdom of the Tao")

Seeking the approval of others leads to suffering:

If you gain the approval of others, you suffer… for you will become dependent on it for your feelings of self-worth and the continual seeking of that approval becomes an addiction that can never be satiated.

If you don’t gain the approval of others, you suffer… because you will keep pushing harder and harder to change their minds and your life will constantly be directed by external forces rather than your own inner guidance system.

Therefore, it is crucial to remain independent of both the positive and negative opinions of other people.  Regardless of whether they love us or detest us, if we make their opinions and assessments more important than our own, it will ultimately lead to dissatisfaction with ourselves and cause us pain.

(Or as they say in the theatre... "If you believe the good reviews, you have to believe the bad ones.")

Your earthly body isn’t your true identity. To find your place of peace you must begin to trust your true eternal self and allow that identity to communicate with you. 

In "Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life," Wayne Dyer challenges his readers to do the following:

For one day, give up all need to be praised by others or to seek their favor.  Try for one day to listen to what this beautiful eternal self has to say to you.  And what you will find is a place of peace, which will remain with you always.

Give yourself the approval you seek.


“Keep eliminating the attachment to old ways.” – Lena Stevens, The Power Path


  1. I've been following your blog from the beginning, I don't know how I happened upon it on the day of your first post, but it seemed to be fate. I am also applying to graduate acting programs for next fall at Yale and UCSD.

    This post in particular struck me. I am currently doing a show that is particularly challenging for me as an actor, because it is not a role and type that I usually play. Of course as an actor, I was delighted to have the chance to do something challenging and different, and have put every once of my soul into this character. Of course we all get some enjoyment in praise and approval, but because this was such a personally challenging role, when the praise stopped coming, those whispers of self doubt and over analyzing thoughts came into my head. I am glad I read this post, as I still have three more weeks of performances. I will give myself the approval I seek, and appreciate the fact that I am doing what I love.


  2. Jerry! Wowzers!!! Hi. Nice to meet you. Totally meant to be... clearly. I love it!!! Thanks for making yourself known via this comment. And I cannot wait to hear more about your journey as time goes on and we're making this whole MFA-audition-thing happen! Pipe-in any time.

    Wishing you broken legs with your current show. Sounds like a great opportunity that you're fully appreciating. Way to go! I approve... Not that you need my approval...'cause you already gave it to yourself... as WELL YOU SHOULD! Hope you're feeling awesome about it all. Thanks for sharing some of your awesomeness on me blog!