The world is vast and filled with billions of unique individuals. It makes sense, clearly, that it doesn’t revolve around you. But sometimes do you feel like it is?
Taking things seriously when they aren’t about you is far from unusual behavior. Unfortunately, it is unhealthy and can harm your relationships, opportunities, and yourself.
Signs that you are taking things personally
Here are 3 signs that you are taking things personally and how to stop them through 4 methods.
Everybody experiences negative emotions occasionally. That is normal and valid. What is not normal is constantly feeling a wide range of negative emotions in response to the people around you. This is especially true if they are overwhelming and disproportionate. Here are some examples:
Seeing other people doing well makes you uncomfortable and triggers strong feelings of insecurity. For example, seeing someone post a photo of themselves on social media can make you look down on your own appearance.
Do you always feel guilty? This is likely because you are internalizing many things that you take personally. Instead of lashing out, you could be turning those thoughts inward. For example, you may blame yourself for things that are out of your control or wish you could do more about things that you don’t need to take responsibility for.
No matter what the situation is, you refuse to have positive thoughts. You can’t help but worry about things that will go wrong, and you can even constantly focus on the negative over the positive, even when there are more good than bad in a situation.
You often realize that you are getting the wrong message from someone’s words because you were too sensitive to hear their point. Sometimes you may wonder if you are intentionally misunderstanding others.
2. You always try to prove yourself
Do you feel like you’re always trying to prove yourself or win the approval of the people around you? It’s a very toxic quality that can hurt you and drive others away, and it’s a key sign that you’re taking things too personally. Here’s how to tell if you’re doing this:
Can’t handle constructive criticism
People who provide genuine, positive constructive criticism, it is not a personal attack. He is someone who tries to help you learn and improve. But if constructive criticism makes you feel insulted, you are taking it personally and feeling upset about the lack of approval from others.
Needs immediate validation
Whenever you do something, you are always thinking about the compliments you could get for it. Worse still, you always want to receive instant praise and appreciation from the people around you.
You are a social perfectionist
You hate making mistakes in public and you desperately want others to think well of you. When something goes wrong, you may experience an overreaction because you fear that your reputation will be permanently damaged.
3. Do you do everything for yourself or do you think everything is
It’s impossible not to take things personally when your worldview is completely self-centered. Somehow it’s all about you, good or bad, so pretty much everything will affect you. Here are some more specific signs that this applies to you:
It feels like a fit when someone doesn’t like what you like
You know, logically, that each person is unique in preferences and tastes. But for whatever reason, when someone isn’t feeling positive about your passions and tastes, you feel like it’s a personal attack on the core of your preferences. The same goes for opinions and beliefs.
You create stories in your head
Your friend calls to cancel a lunch plan you had together and tells you they have a last minute emergency at home. Instead of accepting the explanation of a very rare cancellation, he begins to make up stories. You wonder if your friend is mad at you and holds a grudge for something you said last month. You start to think that they are distancing themselves from you. When an hour is up, you are completely convinced that your friend hates you and is going to interrupt you. It is a lot of logical leaps to reach a completely unfounded conclusion! These imagined situations ruin your positive thinking and they are not healthy ways to handle conflict.
Always think about how situations affect you
It is natural to have self-preservation, so it is not unusual to consider how you will be affected by something serious or significant. But that’s not the kind of problem being referred to! In every situation, no matter how distant, you find yourself thinking about the ways a butterfly effect could affect you.
For example, someone who is hungry makes you think about how they could easily get upset in this state. So you worry that they will attack you and stay away from them for a while. It is an exaggerated answer to nothing!
How to stop taking things personally
If you constantly seek approval from the people around you, you will take things personally. This can often be due to low self-esteem; you disapprove of yourself, so you need it from others. Worse yet, you will constantly lose positive thinking because it is simply impossible to please everyone and you will expose yourself to more attacks from others. Here are some things to think about along these lines:
- Not everyone will like you or accept you because everyone is different and varied in opinions.
- It is impossible to control what others think of you; No matter how hard you try, people’s brains are not influenced by you.
- Social conditioning makes many feel like they should “belong” to the crowd, but it is far from necessary
- Accepting yourself means opening yourself up to more positive relationships with people who like you for who you are.
2. Stop drawing conclusions
It is easy jump to conclusions when someone confronts you immediately. But don’t do it! Often times, someone’s actions and behaviors are not about you. They may not even be directed at you. Most people focus on themselves and their actions can be a reflection of themselves. Let them explain before you start scoping.
Human beings actually have a natural tendency to jump to conclusions, even when it would obviously be more positive so you wait and see the truth. This means that you are fighting your brain’s programming, so don’t be too hard on yourself and work slowly through the process of unlearning these jumps. Here are some tips to do so:
As the person on the receiving end of what seems like a hurtful interaction, you are too close to your emotions to think clearly from the start. So stop your thought process and pause, detaching yourself from the emotions you feel. From a third person perspective, are your emotions reasonable? When they don’t cloud your vision, do you still feel like a personal goal?
The brain has many built-in automatic defenses that cause it to react quickly to certain situations. Your past experiences have shaped your brain’s immediate impulses. Remember, you are in control of your mind, not the other way around. Force yourself to pause and push your own voice and logic forward, overriding the brain’s natural desire to jump to the first thing it grabs.
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes
What message is this person trying to tell you? Are they really the type of person who tries to insult you? From what you know about them, could their heated behavior be the cause of a personal problem? What else have you faced today? Do they lack certain communication skills? All of these questions allow you to see things from their perspective, and you may find that they don’t mean to attack you personally after all.
3. Don’t feed the trolls
Of course, there will be some people who really mean hurting you and want you to take things personally. How can you fight something like that? What you have to do is learn to recognize these types of people and then stop interacting with them.
Start learning how to stop making obviously provocative statements, often used in outright insults. When someone insults you, ignore it and move on. Those who “trolle” often seek reactions., and when they fail, they will stop. Plus, that means it’s not about you, it’s about your entertainment, boredom, and bad personality. Here are some things to keep in mind:
Do not sink
Hurtful and toxic people are cruel and disrespectful. There is no need to sink to their level by responding to small insults. This can cause an endless spiral that is very difficult to get out of! Don’t become part of the problem.
Do not drink poison
Toxic people They are always trying to feed you poison. But its poison is of a weak kind; you can choose to let it not affect you. Do not taste the bitterness of his words. They have specifically chosen them to be as painful as possible and they do not deserve to succeed in hurting you.
Don’t give up your power
When you let these negative people get mad at you, you are giving them your power. They don’t deserve that side of you! Take back your power by being the greatest person. Stay above them and they will leave in due time.
4. Clarify and communicate
Not sure what someone’s intentions are? Good question! Once you’ve got hold of your brain and avoided jumping to conclusions, take a deep breath and clarify with the person what you meant.
The fact is, communication problems are incredibly common. Many people want to say things differently than they say. You can hear badly, others can speak badly, and people can lash out and immediately realize that you shouldn’t have. Just get in touch! There is a reason speaking honestly and directly is the key to harmonious relationships of all kinds, after all.
Most of the people in the world are not trying to put you down or be mean to you. Many of them also focus a little on themselves. So the next time you catch a sign that you are taking something personally, avoid it and stop the thought process. The world is more than just you, and you are more than just the people around you!