Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch
How do you detach yourself from other people’s perceptions of you?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.
The most important step to distance oneself from overly caring about people’s opinions is to refine their understanding and belief in Allah Most High.
The sole actor in existence is Allah Most High. Allah Most High is one in His divinity, His attributes, and His acts. Everything that occurs in creation is the doing of Allah Most High alone.
Only Allah Most High can remove difficulties, and only Allah Most High gives tests and tribulations.
If Allah Most High is pleased with you, the creation’s opinions do not matter. If Allah Most High is displeased with you, the entire creation being pleased with you and enamored by you means absolutely nothing.
The Quranic Call
Allah Most High describes the hypocrites throughout the Quran as constantly seeking the pleasure of the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) for worldly reasons, and they had no care for the pleasure of Allah Most High.
Allah Most High says, “They will swear to you in order to please you. And even if you are pleased with them, Allah will never be pleased with the rebellious people.” [Quran, 9:96]
Allah Most High tells the Believers whose pleasure they should seek, “They swear by Allah to you (believers) in order to please you, while it is the pleasure of Allah and His Messenger they should seek, if they are (true) believers.” [Quran, 9:62]
Turning to Allah
The most important means involves turning to Allah Most High to remove any place for created beings from your heart.
Perform the Prayer of Need with the above intention and the following supplication.
The great Imam ‘Abd Allah bin ‘Alawi al-Haddad’s supplication is a great place to start. This supplication should be done after each prayer.
أَللهُمَ أَخْرِجْ مِنْ قُلُوْبِنَا كُلَّ قَدَرٍ لِلدُّنْيَا وَكُلَّ مَحَلٍّ لِلْخَلْقِ يَمِيْلُ بِنَا إِلَى مَعْصِيَتِكَ أَوْ يُشْغِلُنَا عَنْ طَاعَتِكَ أَوُ يَحُلُّ بَيْنَنَا”
“.وبَيْنَ مَعْرِفَتِكَ الخَاصَّةِ وَمَحَبَّتِكَ الْخَالِصَةِ
“Allahumma akhrij min qulubina kulla qadarin li dunya wa kulla mahallin lil khalq yamilu bina ila m’asiyatika aw yushghiluna ‘an ta’atika aw yahullu baynana wa bayna m’arifatika al-khaassa wa mahabbatika al-khalisa.”
“O Allah, remove from our hearts every value for material things and every place for created things that would draw us to Your disobedience or distract us from Your obedience or come between us and Your special gnosis and Your pure love.”
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Quran and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Quranic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.