I had a wonderful chat with a friend last week about doing our thing in life, paving our own paths in what we're interested in. And with that comes trial and exploration, and allowing ourselves to take chances, knowing that sometimes we will fail. All of this is a part of the process of growth and progress.
She mentioned a great quote during our chat, and it's been stuck in my mind since -
"You'll never be criticized by someone doing more than you. You'll always be criticized by someone doing less."
So don't fret about the judgments of others. Don't worry about the opinions and words someone might be saying of you. These things are merely reflections of the person saying them, not of you. Your job is to stay in your lane, commit to whatever you feel called to do, and know that leaving a well-paved path for a new self-designed one will include bumps and obstacles, but trying it is better than never attempting it at all. What others think of you is inconsequential. You will never satisfy others while living to your fullest potential. Always appeasing others requires the sacrifice of yourself, the dimming of your own light to not unsettle others' insecurities, the belittling of yourself not to evoke the anger or annoyance that others feel when they notice their own inadequacies. So, let go of these thoughts weighing you down or holding you back. Let yourself live like a child, be excited about your explorations, laugh when you fall or fail, and keep your heart open to the possibilities that can arise when you stay committed and faithful to your purpose, whatever it may be.