Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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Stop caring what other people think of me

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lisa_22862 7 years ago

fishyfish 4 days ago

CRGHH 3 years ago

user1405341315 1 week ago

user1405330245 1 week ago

richiemorzine 1 week ago

Evie 4 weeks ago

beepdebeepbeep 1 month ago


I’m getting there with this! Trying to meditate on accepting myself as I am and how to be a good, positive person. 1 month ago


I’m trying to change my thinking to a more positive way. Try to get on being me and take no notice of personally critical people. I’m getting there! 1 month ago

danieleee 4 years ago


ZxxzStop caring what other people think of me!

I have a history with one or two people who manage to push my emotional buttons and upset me about what they think of me. I feel it’s like a form of bullying and I am trying hard not to let it get to me and pull me down. I am working in gradually distancing myself from the situation. 1 month ago

Zxxz 1 month ago

maddoxnick 2 months ago


I’m currently attempting to write an email.

A few months ago I wrote a very personal entry about my family. It helped a lot and the responses I received carried me forward. Because 43Things is not in the least bit private though, it does present the problem as to how personal is too personal. I don’t mind saying what I think here (and get a lot of benefits from doing so), but the people I write about are real people and I’d be horrified if they or someone they knew found my entries.

Which makes writing entries for this goal particularly tricky!

How to phrase this?

The email I am writing shouldn’t be that hard, but it feels like a real struggle. What I have to say is pretty simple. (Someone said that I want to move out as soon as possible, when I neither said nor want any such thing.) My family often decide they know what’s best for me without asking me, or decide what I want even if its the opposite to what I want, and correcting them is hard because they have acted very defensive or slippery in the past.

I have been thinking about what it means to stop caring about what people think of you. There is a Sufi saying that goes something like: the people we care about become our masters – so choose your masters wisely. It isn’t that you should do without caring or masters altogether (good “masters” raise the expectations you have of yourself). The poet and historian Jennifer Michael Hecht (one of my favourite people) said on a radio interview recently that “we believe each other into being.” If we suddenly found ourselves alone on Earth, with no other people “would you bother to wash a dish” (she said), would you bother to wear nice clothes or bother much with anything. Music would sound different, the way you think to yourself would be different… we believe each other into being.

I just don’t want my life to be so restricted by caring anymore. And it is difficult when you depend on those people, because what they think of you is what you have to respond to. If they think they know better or that you can’t make intelligent decisions for yourself then what they think does matter because what they do matters and how you see yourself through how they see you matters.

The empathy I have for them (even when they are saying awful untrue things) just overwhelms me. It is not mutual and I end up in a much weaker position, watering down my truth or only focusing on them.

Getting away from that would be a liberation. (Uh, is this too personal again?). Anyway, maybe the best thing to do is try to get the practical results I want and not care if they think I am demonic or destructive or whatever (it struck me today that in the clashes I’ve had with my family it seems to me as though they see me as both very impotent and very destructive at the same time). 2 months ago

starstuffDumb Judgement

All my life I’ve been worrying about what people will think of me, but recently this fear has been carefully honed in on one thing: how am I gonna explain ME to everyone?

You see, when you’re at home and you’re ill and you’re doing your daily routine, you don’t have to think about your illness. No one is asking you questions so you feel like yourself rather than different to anyone, and, apart from the times you have a mini panic and feel like you have to justify yourself to yourself, you don’t have to answer to anyone either.

Since I’ve been meeting new people, I’ve avoided talking about, mentioning or letting on I have ME or how bad it is. This means the group of people I know (who are all very similar, very healthy athletic types) don’t really know what life is like for me. They don’t know that I spend days in bed after meeting up with them, for example.
Steve knows, and told me he mentioned to Olli and Fred that I have to “recover” after each meal. They said they had no idea and were apparently sympathetic and eager to know more. The trouble is… I don’t know how to talk about this.

I worry what people will think about me. I don’t want to get upset in front of people, cry, appear, well, lame on multiple levels.

I remember all the past bad situations, like Francis or Drew. Drew, one of the group members who I let in about my ME, was somewhat of a disaster. He turned up at my house one night, claiming that just 2% of what he had to tell me could change my life for ever. He had a hand gesture to go with this claim that he kept making, over and over again. “It’s not your fault you don’t know any of this,” he said, “but I can teach you all these things. I can help you. Your mind can heal your body. Just 2% of what I’m telling you, if you let it, could totally turn you around. Just two per cent!” That two per cent lasted for about two hours and needless to say I felt patronized literally to tears.

It happened that when I decided to start writing back to anyone as soon as they wrote to me (emails, private messages or public posts on Facebook etc) I had to stop caring what people thought of me. I had to put aside that “this isn’t funny enough/clever enough/enough enough” mindset. I had to just say it and submit it.

I’m socially anxious – no diagnosed with anything, but I’m undeniable stressed when interacting with people. Case in point: it’s not unusual if I say hello to someone on MSN, and if they pause before they say hello back (as is fairly common) my heart beats faster and I think “Oh my word, I’ve offended them somehow at sometime really really badly, WHAT DID I DO?”

It’s crazy and I have to laugh while writing it, but it’s true.

I’ve known for years that I have to stop caring so much about what people think about me, and that stopping caring is what will really help me talk to people about ME. Practicing quickly writing back to people has made it click. Not just click but clunk loudly and noticeably into place.

I didn’t realise it was practice, but that’s exactly what it’s turned out to be.

I have so much anger and sadness and pain about having ME. No wonder: for years the medical establishment has thought that ME was a psychiatric condition, and even though in the 80s it was proven to be physical it’s taken a long, long time to trickle through. I’ve felt branded rather than diagnosed, and I never know what people will say or if they will judge me. It burns all the more because, when all is said and done, I’m ill. Really ill. And I don’t need salt rubbed into that wound over and over again. No one does, even if you do think 2% of what you have to say to me could change my life.

Difficult conversations are made more difficult because we anticipate a struggle, and if I don’t care what they think of me then it doesn’t matter what they do or say. I don’t expect prejudices to never bother me again, but I don’t have to carry them around with me either.

I’m gonna stop caring what other people think of me, and leave all that at their door.

What is ME? 4 years ago

Jana ;) 15 months ago

stepharris 2 months ago

sunniseaMean email

I received a mean reply via email at work. I was a bit taken back since I was only doing my job. But then I decided, that I could have a bad day or rise above it. And to my surprise, I rose above it. Two hours after the email, I replied and thanked the mean person for sending me the signed approval that I needed. I did not want to stoop to his level. 2 months ago

sunnisea 2 years ago

Liisa99999 2 months ago

Kiya 2 months ago

scarlettkennedyy 2 months ago

rye 2 months ago


I find this goal especially hard to accomplish since I was adopted by my mom’s sister who subsequently passed me over to other family members when she was deployed on active duty from the reserves. I don’t resent her, but I spent most of my childhood trying to please people and trying to be as likable as possible. Acting like this has caused me to appear “fake” and “wannabe perfect.” I find it very difficult to show up to class since I’m so afraid of people in those classes judging me. I’ve failed eight semesters because of this. I don’t have many friends since I deleted my Facebook after a girl told everyone a secret I didn’t want to be told. This was years after high school. I try to keep work about work and now I can’t seem to transition from coworkers to friends. I’d like to go out with people and be happy, but all I can see is people judging me or talking about me. I wish I didn’t see the world around me the way that I do. At times I feel like my boyfriend (we live together), is my only friend. 2 months ago

abbeyabu 2 months ago

athminbri 2 months ago

Rehana_Chohan 2 months ago

ascesis 3 months ago

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