Like all posts I write, this one is for sure spur of the moment. I'd been racking my mind for the perfect, eye-catching post for hours when I arrived at work and read the article for my work's article club (because my bosses/coworkers and I are cool like that).
This editorial piece was, by far, the best I have ever read. It goes into detail about how others view us, and why we let it fester within. When we discover that someone, for any reason, doesn't like us or a thing we did, we overthink it for days. Anyways: You can read it here.
This post really hit home with me, because toward the end of last year, I found out that my friend group had been talking bad about me. I found out that they didn't really like me or some things I said, and they weren't sure of my intentions in the group. Things had been going on behind my back for some time.
How did I find out?
A friend, who I had trusted but apparently was also taking part in this for some time, let it slip over coffee.
I remember my chest sinking in on itself. I couldn't breathe. My friend drove me back home, and I was silent up until we arrived when I proceeded to yell at her before rushing to my apartment, feeling a feeling I hadn't felt in quite some time: betrayal.
Of course, the group and I talked it out--they were my boyfriend's best friends and roommates, so it was unavoidable unless I never wanted to go to my boyfriend's place. I admitted that I had spoken poorly about them too, because everyone does, and we apologized. And now, many months later, we're very close friends.
Finding out that they didn't like me was a blessing in disguise.
The key here is to remember that everyone is going to talk about you because people gossip (it's wired in our brains). Or, they'll at least think about you, poorly or highly, and controlling it is inevitable. Not everyone is going to like you or want to get to know you, and that is none of your business. It's there's.
It's your job to let it go and move past it.
After lots of journaling and contemplation, I realized why I took it all so hard. Well, first, I'm human. And second, I had spent so long building up my self-image, on social media and in person, making myself out to be this ideal person. And, when I found out that it wasn't enough to control other's outlook, I crumbled.
And this leads me to my first tip.
1. Stop living life for other people
Maybe you've been living for that particular person, or for people in general. Of course, we should strive to be welcoming, kind humans, but our self-worth shouldn't come from how people see us.
It should come from how we see ourselves.
People's opinions are always going to hit us in odd ways, negative or positive, but it's important to remain boldly us and trust that we are who we are.
Dress the way YOU want, act as YOU want, write what YOU want, and do it proudly and confidently, preparing for any consequences along the way. Release the doubt, and live for yourself.
If you love yourself fully, and someone else doesn't, then it shouldn't matter.
2. Perhaps it is a blessing in disguise
As I mentioned earlier, that specific friend group not liking me at that given time was a blessing in disguise, because soon enough we became close friends.
Whether it's time to look inward and find a possible problem, or it's time to let that person go, everything happens for a reason. (I heard you eye-roll, but that's okay, because I'm confident in this post, aha!)
Another example is all the boys who broke up with me. Although it hurt that they no longer liked me, each breakup was a blessing in disguise, because before long I ran into Jared, the man of my dreams. (I love you, babe!)
Or maybe you're in a toxic friendship and you don't even know it.
Or maybe you need to invest more time and energy into a certain group because you really have been the difficult one.
Or maybe the book you wrote that got rejected wasn't the book for you.
Reality hurts sometimes, but we don't have to let it. We can positively move past anything we want, whenever we want.
3. Don't overthink it, learn what you can, and keep moving forward
I'll be honest. There have been many nights where I've laid awake contemplating my middle school years, sometimes even elementary school years, wondering why so-and-so didn't like me or why so-and-so stopped being my friend. And I've learned that doing this only drags you further down. Even recent happenings are pointless to dwell upon for long.
While it's good to talk it out and find the root of the problem, sometimes the best thing to do is move on.
We can't make everyone like us. We can't get everyone to read our blog posts or enjoy our writing. But we also shouldn't need that validation from everyone. We can give ourselves our own validation. We can sit back, allow great things, and stop controlling how people view us or the things we create.
Life is always continuing, and new faces are always appearing in our lives. Each step is a learning lesson. So, to keep up with life, to avoid digging a deep hole for ourselves, let's take what we can from every situation, every negative comment or harsh judgment, and move on.
Life is too short to dwell on other's opinions, anyways.
And besides. You taking time to read this post means that you are the greatest person EVER, anyways. :)
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How do YOU deal with others not liking you/talking behind your back? Let me know below!