How Not To Take Things Too Personally?

A couple of weeks ago I received a phone call after sending out my weekly news to my email community of friends and family. Generally, I send out these weekly updates email containing information about my personal journey and stories that I share with friends and family.

When I first start my own coaching practice, I had a lot of inner blocks around these weekly emails many successful coaches had recommended me to do the same. I was really afraid what others might think of these and how openly they are in receiving these.

One day, after hours of sitting down with my own inner critics about these email distribution list, I finally decided that it was ok to let people know how I am doing. It is okay to send them out to friends and family even though I know they are not my ‘clients’. It is okay to share this journey to people who care about what I do and what is going on with my life.

The result of this decision actually had been very rewarding. There had been friends whom I have not spoken for a long time began to share their thoughts about me, many of them are encouraging and full of inspirations.

Last week, however, after sending out my weekly newsletter, I received a phone call from my Japanese teacher. She started by telling stories about other people and how some of my former classmates belong to other religious dominations and how she began to dissociate herself from them because of that. As I was listening to the stories for the first 5 minutes, I started to question her reason for calling.

Long behold, it was something about the email that I have been sending out every week. She was under the impression that I was trying to ‘sell’ things to her. And the reality of the situation is that I was not. As a coach, I do not sell services to friends or family. It is not good practice and perhaps can even result in the opposite of the person I am coaching. It would be a disservice to them if I were to ask my friends and family to be my clients.

While my Japanese teach went on ramping about why I should feel poorly about deviating from the religion believes and how she felt I was a very dishonest person by quoting from Buddha rather than Jesus. I listened quietly at the other end of the line while she expressed her beliefs in God and what it means for her to be ‘spiritual’.

She needed space to express her feelings and emotions. Respectively, I was calm and took my time to listen to her. I watched quietly as things unfold. Nothing personal, No need for me to defend myself nor change her viewpoints.

The question is How do you not take things personally when there is a time like this, a time that really put your emotional intelligence to a test?

1. IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU, IT’S ABOUT THEM.

You have to understand that most people are very unconscious of their own unconsciousness. They will project their own darkness, pain, and internal struggles onto others and thinking that ‘other people’ are always the source of their distress.

As they are attacking you or creating pain to you, they are really revealing the pain, the suffering, the darkness and the many wounds that are present within themselves.

You are not the problem but instead what is going on inside of them is the problem.

2. DON’T GIVE IT TOO MUCH ATTENTION.

Our thoughts have power. As we dwell in those thoughts, we begin to lay tracks for ourselves to create stories in our mind. Every track we lay down leads to more speculations and assumptions. Things that may or may not be true are being created in our mind. We allow the mind to take control and to gain power over us.

So don’t give it too much attention.  Practice mindfulness, go back to your breathing exercise and stay focus. Things do not just happen to us. Things happen around us.

3. WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF YOU IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS.

Never make other people’s opinions of you more important than your own opinion of yourself.

Stay true to who you are, and remind yourself as often as possible that your job here on Earth is to walk your path and live in alignment with your purpose. And if certain people have a problem with that, that’s their problem, not yours! And the truth of the matter is that once you care what other people think of you – chasing their validation and approval and going out of your way to be seen and loved by them, you immediately become their prisoner. Don’t go along to get along.

Don’t allow anyone to put you in that position!

Remind yourself constantly that what people think of you is none of your business, and that their words, actions, and behaviors have little or nothing to do with you, but a lot to do with who they themselves are.

4. SET PEACE OF MIND AS YOUR HIGHEST GOAL.

Whenever you are faced with a difficult person or an uncomfortable situation, take a few deep breaths and ask yourself:

How can I communicate with this person in a way that will make me better, not bitter?
How can I handle this situation in a way that will not disturb my inner peace?

Set peace of mind as your highest goal in life and let nothing and no one interfere with this precious goal. Untie the knots of resentment. Let love liberate you from the chains of fear, anger, and darkness. And open yourself to the infinite reservoir of love present in your heart and share that love with those who are too poor to give anything other than pain. Don’t let other’s people’s darkness become your own. Don’t let their hate, fear, and insecurity contaminate your heart and damage your whole life. Hold your ground, stay calm, and keep your heart free from evil.

LET LOVE FORGIVE

I really believe that we are all born with this innate need to give, to offer to those around us that which we have in our hearts to offer. The people who are at peace and whose hearts are filled with love, kindness, and compassion, give love to everyone they come in contact with; they give joy, laughter, peace, and happiness. While those people who are in distress, whose hearts are wounded because of the many challenges, trials and painful experiences they have gone through, they give fear, pain and a lot of negativity.

That’s what they have to offer at the moment…
People give that which they have in their hearts to give.

Nothing less and nothing more.

At the end of the conversation, I remove my Japanese teacher from my email community of friends and family. She took it very personal with the fact that I do not belong to any individual religious group but claim myself to be a ‘spiritual’ person. I offer to redefine this term of ‘spirituality’ to her but she refused. In her world and in her mind, the word ‘spirituality’ is only to be used when it is referred to as ‘God’.

But the word ‘God’ to be is really none specific. There is no set image of who God is because no one had ever point and say ‘This is God’ or ‘That is God’.  Often time, you will hear me refer to the higher power as “The Universe” and The Universe is really within each and every one of us. We are The Universe, The Universe is within me. This, to me, is what spirituality means to me.

I would not take it personally if you believe otherwise.

And that is the beauty of this world that every one of us may have different beliefs, yet we all recognize the Oneness within the Universe.

Warmly,

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