“What you think of me is none of my business.” Terry Cole-Whittaker
“Don’t take anything personally.” Don Miguel Ruiz
What? If someone is rude to me I’m not supposed to take it personally? When my mother or daughter, father or son hurts me, I’m not supposed to get upset? The boss blows up in my face and it’s his problem? Oh, and here’s my favorite – when my boyfriend/husband or girlfriend/wife says something to me in anger that really feels like it cuts me in half, that’s ok? It’s MY problem?
I’d heard this before and thought it absurd. My family had its share of alcoholics and codependency, so this whole concept felt outrageous to me. We hurt each other all the time with words, and I know that pain was very real!
Years ago I was in a serious relationship that was falling apart despite all my best efforts. Then, a friend suggested I read Women Who Love Too Much. A couple of years later I read Codependent No More, and later down my path the powerful book The Four Agreements. All of these helped me understand that other people do the best they can with what they know. They love us in their way. The behave according to their experiences and interpretations. No matter how much something they do hurts us, they would do the same thing to anyone else in that situation because it’s what they know. Often, they are treating us as good as they possibly know to given their understanding of what’s happening and how to handle it.
So, where does that leave us? On our own healing path of understanding that nothing anyone else says or does is personal. Whether they think we’re wonderful or horrible, brilliant or stupid, beautiful or ugly, all of that is just their opinion! We didn’t create it and we can’t fix it.
Only we can choose the people we fill our daily lives with and the reality that creates for us. Only we can decide then that nothing anyone says or does is personal. Their judgment of us is not reality. It is quite simply THEIR OPINION. It also has nothing to do with how THEY FEEL about us.
Replacing our foundation with this and beginning the journey to align ourselves and our thoughts and feelings to this is nothing short of life-changing. It is, in my humble opinion, a transformational journey that is well worth taking!
Namaste and much love,
Sheryl Sitts, Chief Inspirational Officer