How to stop taking things personally

When we feel insulted or slighted, it saps our energy and enthusiasm for life. A few simple words can have a devastating impact as we replay them in our minds, desperately trying to work out why someone felt the need to say such a thing to us. The same process takes place when they do something to us that we do not like.

As human beings, we are naturally investigative, and we don’t like incomplete information. So, we tend to create our explanations for the words or actions of other people. Of course, the explanation we create is often the worst possible option which leads to us feeling even worse. In the end, we are not upset because of what someone else said or did, we are upset because of how we interpreted their words or deeds. This is what happens when we take things personally.

Today, I want to present you with a video from one of my favourite content creators, Einzelganger. This video addresses the topic of ‘How to stop taking things personally.’

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Key Takeaways

  • The comments which lead to you feeling hurt are rarely about you, They are usually about your performance or a specific situation. Often, they are not really about you. When you realise this, you are less likely to take it personally.
  • You don’t know what is going on in someone else’s head so you are only interpreting and forming your explanation. In most cases, you are likely to be wrong.
  • In taking it personally, you are making an entire situation about you when you are just a part of a bigger situation. When you realise this, you see that the comment or action is smaller and less meaningful.
  • The problem lies in how you view the world and form your interpretation and explanations. They are just living their life and occasionally, you rub each other up the wrong way.

Steps to stop taking things personally

The following are practical steps you can take to stop taking things personally when you are faced with a negative experience. Using these steps will help  you to dissolve your negative feelings about what occured so that you can move on.

1

Change perspective

As already mentioned, you can’t see what is going on in someone else’s head. You may be the centre of your world but you are not the centre of everyone else’s world. If another person acts negatively towards you, it is more likely that they are in a bad mood than they have a major issue with you.

2

Discern reality from fiction

What did the other person say or do? Forget about the why and focus on the specific facts. The truth is that you don’t the why so any reason or explanation you look at is just fiction. You made it up.

When someone insults me, I try to remember that I don’t know why. When I do, I realise that the only fact is that they called me a specific name. Then I laugh as I realise that I have often called myself worse.

3

Discern the nonsense from the truth

Ask yourself honestly if what was said was true. If it is not true, it is not worth worrying about so let it go and move on.

If it is true, then turn it into feedback. Ask yourself how you can implement what you have learned. Even if it was poorly expressed, the comment(s) have had some value so there is no need to be upset. We all need to learn so we can grow and you have just had a learning experience.

Take action

These are 3 simple steps but if you implement them, you will see that there is no need to take things personally. You can then use your time, energy, and enthusiasm to work on something more worthwhile.

Unlock Your Self-Esteem

Free yourself from the vicious cycle of negative thinking so that you can gain the belief to create the life you desire; with powerful self-esteem boosting strategies.


Learn powerful strategies to elevate your self-esteem with'Unlock Your Self-Esteem'.

unlock-your-self-esteem-png