RAISE YOUR HANDS IF YOU'VE EVER HAD SOMEONE SAY SOMETHING MEAN TO YOU, ABOUT YOU, BEHIND YOUR BACK, IN FRONT OF YOU, OR ON THE INTERNET!
*RAISES HAND, along with, everyone else in the world...*
Every single person in this world has been judged ...Unless they are still in utero. (CAUSE NO ONE JUDGES A FETUS!)
I'll be honest here, it's been ingrained in me since I could remember, to take what people think to heart, and to long for the approval of others.
I've always valued the opinions of others because I am very self aware, sometimes too self conscious, AND I'm a major people pleaser. I deeply consider how others think and feel and I truly want to meet their expectations. That unfortunately has always included making people happy with who I am. I had to learn that it's okay to just be happy with myself.
After a lot of growing, self searching, and maturing, I have come to realize that we simply cannot please everyone. And, there will be people out there who are going to dislike me, and disrespect me, no matter how awesome I may be! No matter how many people DO like me!
I am not trying to call out anyone here, only trying to help because I've been where certain people are. But, I see a lot of people caring way too much about what others think and say about them - myself included at times.
I see it on the internet AND in real life. And it pains me to see people become so sensitive to the opinions of others, which are often not very valid.
A little tid bit about me: I am one of the most self critical people you will ever come to know. I spent my whole life as a child and adult, trying to be good enough for others and myself. Until a couple of years ago I wondered why I could never meet those standards. In a way, I am a perfectionist. There's a little voice in my head that often tells me that I am not good enough. I've also had a lot of other people in my past make it clear that I'm not good enough for them. And I finally realized, I never will be good enough for certain people, so I'll try harder to be good enough for me.
This included years of therapy and work on myself, and I'm not ashamed to admit that.
Recently my insecurities were tested once again, by the cruel things said by others. When people talk about my aunt or my Lupus, those are very sore subjects to say the least.
At first my buttons were pushed. I started beating myself up and my defenses went up. I wanted to clear the air, make it known that my illness doesn't make me weak, and that I shouldn't feel guilty for posting a lot about my Aunt and still grieving her. Then I realized, who am I going to try and convince, them, or myself?
And shortly after this triggering, I found it in myself, to turn off those buttons they'd pushed. I realized that I don't need to explain or defend myself, because I KNOW IN MY HEART, that I have nothing to be ashamed of. END OF STORY. So I moved on.
I want to help others overcome these insecurities and triggers as well, so I've made a list of guidelines to follow:
IF SOMEONE IS CRITICIZING YOU:
1) WHO is this person triggering you? Are they close to you? Someone who knows you well enough to make that call? No? Then let it go. If they are someone you really value and trust, then re-consider their intention, and what they are saying.
2) WHAT are they saying? Is it mean? Constructive? Why is it triggering you? Is it something you need to work on, and is there any truth to it? Or is it simply just meant to hurt you? If it's constructive, work on yourself. Take it as a good thing, something to improve, and be positive about it. If it's disrespectful or meant to hurt you, let it go. It's not coming from a good place, so don't even entertain it.
3) HOW is it being said? Was it in a private, respectful manner, coming from a good place, from someone who wants to help you? Or was it said on a public site, or around other people, with anger? Was this person's intention to help you or to shame you?
4) WHY is it being said? Was it said to help you overcome something, or to stop a certain behavior of yours? Or was it said to make you feel bad about yourself? and WHY is it bothering you? Does it trigger some irrational insecurity YOU HAVE about yourself? Or can you use it to constructively work on yourself?
5) SO.. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO REACT? Are you going to let it go? Or is this something that needs to be dealt with? You can use the previous guidelines to help you determine how you will handle this criticism. BUT I will say, for all reasons, all purposes, EVERYTHING is handled best in a private, calm, non-dramatic matter! Defending yourself in public in an angry or dramatic nature, is ALWAYS going to be the wrong way to handle anything. The more you train yourself to maturely handle situations, the better you will feel about yourself.
I HAD to set these guidelines for myself to make progress. I had to STOP being so hard on myself and I HAD TO stop letting others get to me! Even people who I was close to! I had to wake up and realize that their words, their actions, their anger, had very little to actually do WITH ME!
There are a lot of people in mind when writing this. I really hope this can help you guys.
The videos below were made for not only myself, to stop caring about what others think, but also to help other people. The one about me being naked, is my ridiculous over-the-top way of saying, hey look, I'm going to give you the illusion that I am completely exposed and post it anyway. I don't care if you're judging me. ;)
And remember guys,
KERRY LOVES YOU! :)