May 25, 2007 at 6:30 pm #67106
Dr. Jeannie Austin Ph.D Personal life coach is one of my friends on my MySpace. She just posted this in a bulletin and gave me permission to repost it. It hit home with me because I’m having a hard time healing a personal wound I am carrying around.
I’m sure some of you also have your own wounds you would like to heal.
“Taking it Personally “
Body: Sometimes it is difficult not to be at the effect of someone else’s behavior or communication. When we feel slighted or rejected, we may be tempted to take it all very personally. Rev. Terry Cole-Whittaker wrote a book awhile back entitled “What You Think About Me is None of My Business”. I think the title alone is worth the price of the book.
A shift in perception that usually helps me is to remember that when people come to me with asserted energy (or white knuckles) on an idea or statement, I know it is about them and their reality, not mine (unless I am tempted to buy into it).
There is so much negative energy wasted on worrying about other people’s realities and beliefs. My friend Lauren always helps me remember when I tell her someone said such and such and I felt really anxious (angry, defensive, sad, judged, manipulated~fill in the word here!) about it. She always has the clarity of mind to say “Clearly, that was about him/her and her challenges.” And she always backs it up with consistencies. Needless to say, she is always right on!
In the book “Toltec Wisdom” by Sheri A. Rosenthal, DPM she writes, “As children we internalize everything and make it about us. We become hurt and wounded. Our less-than-perfect parents couldn’t help themselves; they had their own issues, problems, and wounds. This doesn’t make their actions right; it just makes them not about us. When we can rewrite our story […] we’ll be able to let go of what we believe […].
One way to hear our own truth is through the practice of getting quiet. Listening to the war of words that bounces around between our ears often serves only to confuse us further.
Let’s all try to embrace our own reality and truth and not someone else’s. Remember, what you think about me is none of my business!
With Love & Respect!
Dr. JeanineMay 25, 2007 at 9:41 pm #118477JBannisterParticipant
At least 20 years ago I worked for a Private Investigator who was up in years and had been in the business for decades. His expression – the one all of us who worked for him or knew him well – was, “What people think of me is none of my business.” Though I hadn’t thought about it in a long time, I have never forgotten those words and have always tried to apply them to my own life.
It’s often a difficult thing to do, and – for me – a constant work in progress.
The other saying your post reminded me of is the saying in a fortune cookie I opened a few years ago. It read, “A step to wisdom is learning to shrug.”
JulieMay 25, 2007 at 11:42 pm #118478
I only wish that I was someone who didn’t care. It would make life so much easier. People who really know me know I never do anything without the best of intentions. My sense of integrity is high and my own conscience beats the heck out of me if I intentionally do wrong. I think I was put on this earth to help others because that’s what I’ve been doing my whole life. Sometimes I go too far in trying to help when it’s not wanted.
I never developed a hard shell around me and wish I could just shrug off what people think of me. I easily forgive others who hurt me but can’t shurg off the hurt from losing friends because they think badly of me.
I wonder how lifewould be if we all only cared about what we thought of ourselves?May 26, 2007 at 3:38 pm #118480dancemommax3Participant
Thank you so much for posting this article – it was exactly what I needed. I have been feeling down for the past few days because of something that was said about another person, and I had nothing to do with it, yet somehow got blamed. It’s been stewing in my mind for a couple of days, and that was just the thing to help get past it.
I, too, wish I didn’t care as much what people thought. And I have been working on having more confidence in myself, and this is definitely going to help!
Thank you again – it was just what I needed!
May 26, 2007 at 4:15 pm #118481Pam BKeymaster
Gail, everyone makes mistakes. No one is perfect, even with the best of intentions.
My mother used to tell me “the road to hell is paved with good intentions”. Certainly intention is important, but my intentions don’t always line up with what the other person really needs more, that I’m not able to see from my limited human perspective. What I intend for someone else in my actions may be totally opposite of what the other person really needs. If that’s the case, my intentions don’t mean didly to the other person.
I used to ache (still sometimes do) about what others thought of me and I try to remember what else my mother said, “You can please some of the people all of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.”
When I used to ache about what the other kids thought about me at school, she would remind me that even if I were perfect (no one is) human nature is such that some person would create something negative about me, because you can’t please all of the people all of the time, etc etc.
She was able to point out that trying to have everyone understand and appreciate me for my intentions and great conscience as a loosing battle. We all answer to a higher power that already knows the truth, don’t we? :)May 26, 2007 at 6:25 pm #118482legnaParticipant
Sometimes I am able to truly set aside what other people think about me and focus on letting right action flow through me, and other times I really fall short of that goal. I think that this challenge is just part of caring about others. We really don’t want to be the cause of someone else’s pain.
When I feel that my intentions have been misunderstood I visualize this bouncing off a protective shield of energy all around me. When I am successful I don’t internalize the other person’s reaction or let it affect me in any way. It is easier to do when it is not a relative or other close person. It works really well with co-workers and friends! I find that if I don’t allow it to bother me the other person gets over it more quickly as well. It is kind of like when your child falls, and they look at you to figure out if they should cry or not!
I am glad to be a part of this community of people who care about others, and am honored to share my journey with all of you.May 27, 2007 at 7:26 pm #118484Pam BKeymasterlegna;134842 wrote:I am glad to be a part of this community of people who care about others, and am honored to share my journey with all of you.
Amen! And it’s also wonderful to be part of a community where it’s understood that we’re all human, and that we all make mistakes. No expectation of impossible perfection :love: Amen!May 27, 2007 at 9:31 pm #118485JeannieParticipant
Gail this article has perfect timing. I just finished a very difficult week on so many levels. I have been faced with challenges and blessings and many lessons. A teacher came into my life this week which was great and at the other end of the spectrum, I had to confront someone at work who then tried to lie about me. Being the scorpio that I am, I am always concerned about what others think. I try hard to please people, but sometime come off sounding blunt and then I replay it over and over in my head. (something elso I am working on). Instead I should learn to just let it go and keep trying to be better. I think that the phrase “What You Think About Me is None of My Business” is going to become one of my new mantras thanks fo sharing.
P.S. You are a sweetheart, Gail:hearts:May 27, 2007 at 10:54 pm #118487
It’s nice getting hugs and thank yous, but they belong to Dr. Jeannie Austin. :) She gave me the permission to post it.May 28, 2007 at 12:48 am #118488JBannisterParticipant
It is interesting that this thread seems timely for many of us. (Thank you Gail)
I just spoke to a friend. She had decided a few weeks ago to make the college graduation of a friend of hers a special event. Her friend has been a starving student who came from a poor family, and no one was going to be able to do anything for her to celebrate – though she is the first in her family to graduate.
So my friend went all out. Organizing and paying for a party, spending her own money for family members to be able to give graduation gifts they themselves couldn’t afford, arranging a special graduation dinner, etc.
It turned out that she over heard some of these people speaking negatively about her. After having spent weeks of planning as well as $400 out of her own pocket to make it a special day for a friend who had grown up in a ghetto, graduate from college, she heard herself referred to as “bossy and controlling” – amongst other things.
After talking to her for a long time, I was pleased at how much better she seemed to feel by the time we hung up. The family of the graduate may have felt guilt, they may have felt envy, they may just not be nice people. The bottom line was that she had completed what she had set out to do. Her friend had a wonderful graduation experience, and at the end of the day she was happy, proud of herself, and grateful for the profound thoughtfulness of a friend.
As to what the graduates family thought of my friend – well, she agreed, it was none of her business.
JulieMay 28, 2007 at 7:24 pm #118501AntsmomParticipant
This is a good post that always needs reminding, at least I know I do. I read The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. The book is on Toltec Wisdom and I too get hurt and sometimes worry what people may think of me and I have to remind myself of these 4 simple truths, here I’m typing them straight from the inside cover of the book:
1. BE IMPECCABLE WITH YOUR WORD
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.
2. DON’T TAKE ANYTHING PERSONALLY
Nothing other do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.
3. DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
4. ALWAYS DO YOUR BEST
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgement, self-abuse and regret.June 9, 2007 at 3:53 am #118673paigeParticipant
About 8 years ago I was the victim of some pretty bad gossip – totally not true – but in a very small town, that doesn’t much matter. I thank God I had some very wise, life-changing, advice I’d recieved about 20 years before this event that I could fall back on:
“What do you hold over them?”
These days I’m older and wiser…I pick my battles. But here’s the thing, if someone targets me for anything negative, I do a couple of things: ask myself how well they know me; and if they don’t know me, what’s their motivation.
99.9% of the time, it’s NOT personal, but on those rare ocassions when it is, all I have to do is ask myself, “What do I hold over them?”
99.9% of the time it’s the truth.
Sorry, I know this may not be exactly a spiritual approach to the problem, but it is human nature and it has always worked for me.
Bottom line is that I don’t go out of my way to wreak havoc with other’s lives and I derive no pleasure in a stranger’s misery.
p. :thumbsup:June 15, 2007 at 1:36 am #118766SandyK1360Participant
Pam! LOVE IT! May we have permission to post on our sites? I know some friends that could use this.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.