I may be late to the plethora of "This is 40" posts, but I have to say I have enjoyed reading many of them. 40 is a funny number. In your twenties you kind of dread the big 3-0 and then as you get closer to it realize it isn't that big a deal. But that 40 looms in the distance and that one is scary.
Because it is the end of that threshold. You HAVE to be a responsible adult. You have more years behind you than you may have ahead of you. And people really start scrutinizing what you wear and do.(She is old enough to know better!)
I realized that as I drew closer to 40 that none of it mattered. I had spent so much of my twenties and thirties worrying about what others thought and how I was being perceived or judged, that I rarely allowed myself to be "me". And the more I thought about it, the more I stopped giving a damn.
I don't give a damn if you don't like what I think. That is why it is called my opinion. It is ok for you to disagree with me, ok to have a dialogue with me so long as it is respectful, but I really don't care if you don't like it.
I don't give a damn if you don't like what I say (unless it would harmful to another person in which case, I get you). When I moved to Texas 18 years ago I quickly learned that my frank and blunt outlook on things was considered rude. Much better to smile and nod and talk about your disagreements behind the other person's back. I like to call that the "Bless your heart" approach. As a people pleaser, I have had to work really hard to follow this one. And I am done caring about it. I certainly won't let the "You're an idiot" slip out but if I think you are wrong, I am not going to be afraid to say so. So..beware ;)
I don't give a damn with how I am perceived (for the most part). The truth is I am a socially awkward fairly nerdy but talkative introvert and as a result I don't fit nicely into most circles. This character trait did not serve me well as a teenager in that vast jungle of wanting to be like everyone else. I spent a long time trying to go along with the herd and have found in recent years, that I am much happier just being the person I am. Quirks and all.
So yeah. I am 40, and I just don't give a damn.