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The greatest malady… ‘What will people think?’

by R K Malik

The greatest prison that people live in is the fear of what other people think. Right from our childhood, this thought gets embedded deep in our minds … what will others think? This is more pronounced in the Indian middle class. It is universal to think about what others may feel about when we fail in an exam or do not come up to the expectation of others in another sphere. But to worry about “what will people think” before taking every small decision in life is what I call a “serious disease”.

This “what will people say “syndrome afflicts people of all ages and genders and much more in India than any other country.

But it is also true that most of us are guilty of worrying too much about what others think of us. I guess we generally overestimate how much and how badly, others think about us. The direct consequence of that is we are far inhibited and less creative and limit ourselves in thoughts, actions and....

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