Wolves Don't Lose Sleep Over The Opinion of Sheep

Opinions are not absolute truths. Learn to take them with a grain of salt, and don't lose sleep over the harmful words of others.
Wolves Don't Lose Sleep Over The Opinion of Sheep
Valeria Sabater

Written and verified by psychologist Valeria Sabater.

Last update: 27 May, 2022

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “No one can make you feel inferior unless you let them.” But whether or not you believe it, other people’s opinions will always affect you in one way or another. But don’t lose sleep over that kind of thing, it’s not a healthy cycle to enter.

One of the biggest mistakes that people make is thinking that their thoughts or assessments are an absolute truth.  When they do, they use these truths to “classify” or look down on other people, which creates an even more complicated situation.

We all have the right to defend our opinions, but you should never take that to the point where you try to make your personal opinion a final truth for someone else.

In the same way that you need to be careful about your opinions, you also can’t let other people’s criticisms or negative thoughts affect you.

Wolves don’t lose sleep over the opinion of sheep, because they’re strong and know their virtues and strengths.  They never let flock influence them. Let’s take a deeper look at this.

Don’t lose sleep over harmful opinions

Harmful opinions, the ones that have the power to most affect you, usually come from someone you’re close to, someone who means a lot to you.

Over the course of your life, you’re going to have to face judgment and criticism from everyone around you. They often come from people that in your most intimate social circle.

  • According to psychologists, the greatest sources of suffering in parent-child relationships—even romantic relationships—are judgments or opinions that someone close forms about you.
  • A belief or an opinion.  This is something that people cling to because they think it’s true.
  • Once an opinion is formed and “tossed out” in a conversation, it oftentimes becomes a source of conflict.

Here are some examples:

“You’ll never amount to anything,” “You’re so insecure that you’re doomed to fail,” “You’re not going to be able to lose weight, you’re just always going to be fat.”

These types of opinions are what most affect our self-esteem.  But the truth is, beliefs held by strangers, or people you’re not close to, shouldn’t really mean that much to you. The problem is when you’re close to the person judging you.

wolves don't lose sleep over the opinions of sheep

I will not let your opinions weaken my self-esteem

At some point or another, we’ve all had to face hurtful comments that someone spits out at a family dinner. T o avoid conflict, you generally stay quiet, put on a nice face, and hide our anger.

Every opinion out there forces you to reflect on whether or not it’s true. But here are some things to always keep in mind:

That opinion…does it define you, or no?

You don’t need to immediately react defensively. First, you need to listen and then calmly analyze their opinion.

  • It’s possible that a friend or family member is telling you the truth, but you can’t see it at the time.  “I think your relationship is making you unhappy,” “I don’t think you’re behaving appropriately,” “I think you’d be happier if you changed jobs”…
  • Calmly reflect on these comments.  If you think it might be true, maybe you should accept their opinion and thank them for sharing it.

But if it’s wrong, or inappropriate, then it doesn’t define you. In that case, you’ll need to think rationally about the comment and avoid negative emotional reactions like anger, rage, or sadness. Don’t lose sleep over it.

If you have let the opinion define you, just let it go.  Don’t waste your time or health on something that doesn’t benefit you.

image of wolf constellation

Foolish and empty opinions fall on deaf ears

Things that make you mad, things that fill you with rage, make you their prisoner. If there are generally a lot of judgments and harmful opinions in your family, defending yourself with rage isn’t going to help much.

  • You may end up doing this time and time again, but just remember that people who say things with hurtful intentions don’t have the gift of empathy, and have even less respect.
  • That’s why, in order to avoid harboring more negative emotions, it’s best to distance yourself from them, to protect your self-esteem and your integrity.

Be clear with yourself about who you are, what’s important to you, what you’ve achieved, and what you deserve.  Don’t get upset about stupid, untrue opinions that other people dump on you. Refuse to be a victim, don’t lose sleep over these things.

Wolves are territorial, proud animals.  They have a clear understanding of their nature and instincts. They rarely let themselves be domesticated, and they rarely forget their roots and strengths.

Nature is wise and it’s always good to learn from it. Learn from their example and worry about your own truths, your own identity, and your own self-esteem.

In the end, foolish opinions fall on deaf ears.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Forscher, P. S., Cox, W. T. L., Graetz, N., & Devine, P. G. (2015). The motivation to express prejudice. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 109(5), 791–812. https://doi.org/10.1037/pspi0000030
  • Lockwood, P. L. (2016). The anatomy of empathy: Vicarious experience and disorders of social cognition. Behavioural Brain Research, 311, 255–266. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2016.05.048

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.