A lot of people have a problem with taking things personally. However, doing so is really unnecessary and shows that more self-growth is needed. If you are aware that you take things personally, that is the first step of self-growth and learning how not to take things personally. You should congratulate yourself for winning half the battle, though there is more room for improvement. Here are some ways that you can stop taking things personally.

Understand That Things Don’t Really Matter

Couple sharing emotions on a picnic mat

A way to not take things personally is to understand that, at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what happens or what anyone says or thinks of you. You have the power to take things personally or not to take things personally. When you take things too personally, your mind is just tricking you into feeling bad. If you find that you frequently take things too personally, you have to do some soul searching and try to figure out why you are being bothered by things in that manner.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what happens

Why Things Don’t Matter

The reason why things don’t matter is that, in the grand scheme of things, what really matters is your health, well-being, safety, and the well-being of your loved ones. What someone says to you might sting, emotionally, but to a large extent, it won’t seriously affect your life unless you let it.

As long as you can come back home at the end of the day, feed yourself, safely tuck yourself into bed and go on with your life, it doesn’t matter what anyone says or does to you.

Be Grateful

Gratitude journal

An excellent way to not take things personally and to understand why things don’t matter is to be grateful. Think of all of the great things that you have and enjoy, and give thanks for being able to experience those things in your life.

Many people in the world are unable to experience even the simplest of pleasures that you take for granted, such as having time off, being physically able to do certain things, having loved ones and having access to specific opportunities.

Seeing a blade of grass or a flower growing out of the ground is something that not everyone has the privilege to do. Some people crave human interaction but never get enough of it. In the moment, you may be able to buy a banana smoothie while someone else in the world does not have the time, money, health, or resources to be anywhere near one.

“When you let it get personal, the cost becomes personal too. You’re opening your own heart here. You sure you want to do that?” – Michael Marshall Smith

Even if you don’t initially think that your life is that great or that you really don’t have that much, thinking of what you do have will make you realize that, in many ways, your life is prosperous. Upon coming to this realization, it is harder to take things personally.

You can do several exercises to realize what you are grateful for. For example, every morning, you can come up with a shortlist of things that you are thankful for in your life. You can also put another spin on the activity by writing a shortlist of great things in your life that other people may not have in their lives.

Confidence, Self-Worth, And Sense of Self

If you tend to take things personally, you have to try to think about why you do. There is a good chance that the problem of taking things personally stems from deep-seated issues that have to do with confidence, insecurities, self-worth, identity, and a solid sense of self.

Understanding Your Self Worth

Woman reflecting on herself in a mirror

You may feel insecure and not have a complete understanding of how valuable you are as a human being. It doesn’t matter whether you are black, brown, white, tan, tall, short, male, female, strong, weak, wealthy, poor, old, young, pretty, ugly, middle-income, weak, sick, healthy, fat or thin.

It doesn’t matter how you look, whether you have a disability, what your spiritual views are, or what your backstory is.

As a human being, you have an infinite amount of value, and you matter—no matter what anyone tells you or what the circumstances of your life make you believe. Each person has a high potential of affecting others by their words, actions, and presence.

You have an infinite amount of value, and you matter

Just your presence, alone, can be a compelling force in the room—more powerful than you think. Nobody is really better than anybody else. We are all humans that enter life as babies, age, and exit life in the same way.

Not Enough Going On In Your Life

Stuff as hobbies

If you don’t have confidence, a solid sense of self or a good sense of self-worth, there may be some sort of void in your life that isn’t being adequately filled. For example, partaking in hobbies and social activities can help to develop a solid sense of confidence and self-worth. Learning about and doing things that you love can foster a sense of security, confidence, self-love, and self-worth.

Also, partaking in activities can put you into a different mindset where you are less likely to have toxic, self-defeating thoughts running through your head. When you feel fulfillment, love, and support, it is harder to feel bitter, offended, and angry.

Volunteering, going back to school, getting involved in classes, and learning new hobbies and subjects can empower you with a sense of security and confidence.

Criticisms Are Sometimes Good For You

If you are the type of person who takes criticisms personally, you have to understand that criticisms are generally not meant to hurt you. In life, people may criticize you, what you are doing, and your style to help—nothing more and nothing less.

If a person negatively criticizes you to help you or provide you with feedback, you should not feel embarrassed, sad, or angry. In fact, you should be grateful that someone is speaking his/her mind about what he/she thinks of you, your style, or your work. A person who criticizes you may be trying to make you aware of your flaws and bad habits.

A person who criticizes you may be trying to make you aware of your flaws and bad habits

Learning About The Tastes And Views Of Others

Of course, opinions are subjective, and you may face criticisms from people who have different tastes and values as you. Because of a clash of tastes and values, the opinions of these people might come off as mean or insulting. However, you have to realize that, in reality, these people are just telling you what they think. From their perspectives, they are telling you what they think is right.

They are making you aware of how individuals with their views think of you. When someone with different tastes and values criticizes you, think of it as an opportunity to learn about the opinions of others, and don’t take it too personally.

Things Don’t Really Have To Do With You

Man with a big smile on his face

When people say or do things, the root reason for why they are saying or doing those things has nothing to do with you. Even if a person directly says or does something to you, what that person says or does directly stems from his/her needs, insecurities, and personal issues.

Manipulation Tactics

Many times, a person will say things to you in an attempt to manipulate you so that he/she feels power or gets what he/she wants. The words or actions of someone trying to manipulate you are empty. It can be challenging, though, to figure out whether a person is manipulating you.

Conclusion

In conclusion, if you want to stop taking things personally, you should understand that the actions and words of others don’t really matter and why people’s thoughts and actions don’t matter. You should form a sense of gratitude and appreciation for everything in your life. Criticisms are generally good for you and even if you don’t think that they are useful or helpful, consider them to be lessons about how others feel about you. Doing things in your life that are fun and fulfilling are great when it comes to battling the emotional void that leads you to take things personally.

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