Water off a duck

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“Confidence is silent. Insecurity is loud”

Have you ever been talking to someone when, out of the blue, they make a comment that appears to be innocent, yet it’s an insult to you in disguise? Building themselves up in the same breath that is putting you down? I’ve been in shock as I’ve witnessed many comments such as “I just hate that style of pants, but you really make them work!” You want to say, “What????” or “Seriously?” Sadly, many people lack propriety these days and blurt out whatever pops into their heads. They lack any filter and are most likely quite immature.

It’s quite possible that people have become too comfortable throwing around their comments on social media since it lacks a real-world reaction. It’s also possible that people have judged themselves too harshly when seeing everyone’s amazing life on Facebook, and they have made it a habit to say things that build themselves up in the real world, usually at your expense.

It’s quite tempting to seek justice and squelch this nuisance. Problem is, they’re oblivious to their inappropriate behavior—or I at least prefer to believe they are. Good manners guide us through our daily conversations, so if we actively choose them, there should be no sarcasm, no blatant put-downs, and no put downs in disguise.

The truth is, the ways people speak are reflections of their inner states. Pay attention and really listen. Are they happy, peaceful, and content with their lives? Are they fearful, angry, or in pain? Are they trying to prove they are important, special, or that they do matter? When dealing with offensive people, if you are mindful of “what” they are saying, you may be able to see through the façade to reveal their pain. One of the four agreements taught by Don Miguel Ruiz is to not take anything personally. Nothing is about us. Whatever people feel about the world influences what they say and do. It’s all within their interpretation. It’s about them! So repeat this to yourself

Try to put yourself in a state of acceptance. This is not to be confused with approval. Accepting that a person has a certain approach to life is not the same as approving of their behavior. It simply means that they are just that way and they’re doing the best they know how. Honestly, aren’t we all? The challenge is to be aware and to not react. Remember, you can redirect the conversation, choose not to respond, or simply and peacefully walk away. Silently wish them peace and success in healing whatever is not working well for them. And shake it off, like water off a duck!

Keep it simple,
Just Teri

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