I used to take rejections and critics badly.
During my career as a fashion influencer, there were a lot of rough times, including the times when I bumped heads with some people, professionally. While eventually, I bounced back and things resolved themselves with proper discussions, some days I took it personally. I lost sleep over it. I lost my confidence over it.
Before I met Kalvin, I was in a relationship with a man who was not too loving at times. I won’t get into details right now, but some of his actions were neglectful and not at all kind. The worst part is that I thought his actions were about me – so some thoughts occurred like, “What is wrong with me?” or “Why does he do that to me? Am I not lovable?”
It was very fortunate of me that I always have my best friends. When I told them about him, they reminded me one thing: that it was not about me; that he would probably be acting that way with anyone he was dating; that I should stop losing my confidence or sleep thinking what I did wrong.
BECAUSE MOST OF THE TIME, IT WAS NOT ABOUT ME
Since that moment onwards, I learned a huge life lesson: that not taking how people treat us personally is one of the most liberating thoughts that we should embrace.
In life, it is easy for us to think that every single thing people did is because of us. Thoughts like, “She doesn’t care about me,” or “Maybe I don’t deserve the love I wanted,” occur every now and then, especially in the face of rejection. This is how we work hard to please other people at the expense of losing ourselves.
Before that happens (or if you are experiencing it right now), I hope you’d remember to free yourself from taking things personally. When you take things personally, you are actually limiting yourself with others’ opinions about you. Remember that you can’t control what other people think about you and do to you.
On the other hand, if you don’t take things personally, you open yourself to a broader horizon of different perspectives. By freeing yourself, you will develop true empathy for the other person. It is important to keep in mind that their words and behaviors are not necessarily how they feel about you – but more likely, they are about how they feel about themselves. Maybe they were having a bad day; someone in their family got bad health report; or maybe, that’s just who they are. If you see it this way, you’ll be kinder to the people who are rude to you.
This is a really short reminder to let yourself go from negative people, and root your happiness and confidence within yourself and God. It might not be easy at first, but when you do, your life will change – and you will feel liberated.