“Whatever you think, whatever you feel, I know is your problem and not my problem. It is the way you see the world. It is nothing personal, because you are dealing with yourself, not with me.” ~ Don Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements.

Why do most of us find it so difficult in the face of an insult to not take it personally? The concept of “Not taking things personally,” is easy to understand but very hard to apply.

The first thing to remember is that we can’t control what others say to us, but we can control our reaction. That is easier said than done. When someone demeans our character, insults us, or gives us a backhanded compliment, our natural response is to question our own worth. We analyze their comment, trying to figure out why that person said what they did and if we deserved it. Why do we consider the validity of others’ viewpoints when they criticize us?

Everyone views the world differently and everyone has opinions. What is important to remember is that opinions are just opinions; they are not absolute truths. They are based on a variety of influences that have nothing to do with us. Others’ comments are projections of their own issues and inadequacies, they are not about us. Still it is very difficult to not take offense.

Many of us fear rejection. When we take things personally, we take a rejection that is not about us and make it about us. We give away our personal power and disrespect our integrity. This reaction is based on our own insecurities, our need for acceptance and approval, and/or from unresolved issues. Few of us are 100 percent happy with ourselves, we all have weak areas. This feeling of inadequacy, no matter how miniscule, allows the ill-intentions of others to cause us to question our self-worth.

The best way to retrain our responses is to retrain our mind. It takes practice and strength to change the pattern. The word “Me” is a key factor in our awareness. Whenever we hear ourselves saying something like, “How could they say that to me,” recognize that we have personally taken on the importance of the statement. We have to accept that not everyone will like us, and that we don’t have to go out of our way to please others to be liked. When we heal our sore spots we are better equipped to let things roll off our back.

“When you make it a strong habit not to take anything personally, you avoid many upsets in your life. Your anger, jealousy, and envy will disappear, and even your sadness will simply disappear if you don’t take things personally.” ~ Don Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements.

Love Always,

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Author's Bio: 

Randi Fine is a native of Baltimore, Maryland who has been living in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida since 2005. She has two adult children: a beautiful daughter and a handsome son, and she has been married to a wonderful man for 22 years.

Her lifetime thirst for artistic, creative expression led her in 2008 to the challenge of writing her memoir, Fine…ly: My Story of Hope, Love, and Destiny. During the two year process of navigating through the unfamiliar waters of authorship, she discovered for the first time that she truly had a passion for writing. She now devotes herself to writing full-time from her home. By sharing her wealth of experiences, insights, and lessons, she aspires to offer hope, compassion, and understanding to those who searching for answers.

Love Your Life, is a journal that she writes to connect with others who share in her mission of spreading light, love, and healing to the world. Her blog talk-radio show is called, A Fine Time for Healing: A Sanctuary for Your Emotional Wellbeing. She discuss self-help and spiritual life-skill topics that will heal and enhance the life experiences of others. http://my.blogtalkradio.com/randi-fine

She is a deeply spiritual person, following an enlightened path of her own design. It is a connection that she faithfully trusts to guide her in every aspect of her life.