Hello Everyone, this is the podcast, Close to the Bone. I’m your host, Carl Vreeland.


One quick warning before I begin. I will be using, although sparingly, profanity in this episode. After some thought, I decided it was necessary and honest for me to do so. OK. . . .


This is episode #23, entitled, I Don’t Give a F*ck.


From time to time, I’ll hear someone say, “I used to care what people thought about me, now I just don’t give a fu*k.” And although I’m sure they believe this to be true, the words and emotions behind them contradict their intended intention and meaning. It’s quite clear, they do still care. They are bothered by what people think or say about them, only now they are not showing it. The very fact that they are proclaiming they don’t care is indicative of caring. What’s more, the use of profanity is a clear sign of anger. And where there is anger, there is caring. Or more accurately put, there is hurt.


We see similar quotes posted on social media that are intended to be empowering. “I’m all peace, love, light, and a little go f*ck yourself.” You might say this quote is cute and funny, and one should have a sense of humor about it. Perhaps so, but nevertheless, the attitude is aggressive and misleading. Provided we want to be happy and joyful—living with anger and aggression would be imprudent.


Looking further, suggestions like “Be happy, it drives people crazy” are misguiding. Desiring to drive people nuts is an aggressive act. This is an attitude we would be better off without. But you might say, “Why should I concern myself with all this?” Well, the short answer is, an awareness of our emotions, specifically anger and fear, is always wise. Remaining ignorant, meaning, ignoring what may be causing us suffering is unwise, and so we should concern ourselves with all this. In life, everything should be scrutinized, because everything matters when it comes to well-being.


Truth is, if we open up our minds and hearts, we will see and feel that we do care about what people say and how they view us. And there’s nothing wrong with that. We should care. It’s only when we are profoundly bothered by what other people say that we should be alarmed. When people criticize us and it shakes our self-confidence, this is a cause for concern. It may be difficult to admit that our opinion and value of ourselves are greatly affected by the judgment of others, but if we possess a desire to grow and to experience more joy and happiness, it is necessary to get honest with ourselves.


Many of us need the approval of others to feel good about ourselves. So when we are criticized and respond by saying, “I don’t give a f*ck what people say about me,” behind the not caring and underneath the anger are usually feelings of insecurity and hurt. Essentially, we are just hiding our disturbance under the guise of not caring. What’s more, it’s coming from a place of pride and ego. It’s hard and protected. When someone takes this stance of “not caring,” we often find and inflated ego and low self-esteem, which usually goes hand in hand. They play off each other, our ego compensates for our lack of self-value by not caring. Imagine the scales of justice—less self-worth, more ego.


Conversely, when self-love rises, the ego lowers, that is to say, it deflates. And so, the more we love ourselves, the less reliant we become on the approval of others. More than that, we become more understanding of others and less bothered by what they say, because we know why they put us down. We know they are troubled and hard on themselves and suffering.


When we are healthy-minded, we might care if someone dislikes us, but it doesn’t bother us deeply. If we are self-assured and confident, our self-worth and self-value are not based on the opinions of others. We might take note about some off-handed remark, look at it, review it, and make a self-assessment, and if the opinion is a valid judgment, we might consider making an effort to correct the problem. And if it turns out to be a false determination, we move on. Likewise, the same goes for praise, in that, we stay humble, accept the complement, perhaps feel good about it, and then let it go. We shouldn’t wallow in rejection nor bath in recognition.


And so, we must do the inside work. And this begins with developing a self-awareness, a heightened awareness, a vigilance, cultivating a watchfulness of our thoughts, words, and actions. And of course, most importantly, getting honest. Without rigorous honesty, we cannot break through the self-denial. Without looking in the mirror, as it were, we cannot grow emotionally and psychologically, we will remain stunted, and life will continue to be troublesome.


I highly suggest exploring the contemplative practices such as Yoga. And try mediation, more than once. Perhaps try some meditation apps. Read spiritual literature. If you’re struggling with addiction, try the Twelve Step Program, go to an appropriate meeting, either AA, NA, CA, whatever, find the right meeting and Fellowship. Perhaps get a shrink as well. If you’re depressed, get help. Life is short. There is help out there. And if you don’t give a f*ck about any of this, at least ponder it, read more about it, you don’t have to live with anger, fear, hurt, or bitterness, help yourself, better yet, ask for help.


That’s all I have, as always thanks for listening. If you like this podcast, please Subscribe to it, Review it on Apple, and Share it with others. Also, I’m starting to post some of the podcast transcripts, they can be found on my blog at my website, Thank you again.


I strongly encourage my readers to share their thoughts and add to the conversation. Don’t be shy, leave your comments below. 


One Comment

    • Stephany

    • 5 months ago

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