How to not take things personally

Are you sensitive? Do you feel hurt when people insult you – or say something mean? Would you like to learn how to NOT take things so personally?

The key is – compassion – for yourself and others. I know that seems crazy – but it really works.

Compassion is a powerful tool

First – feel compassion for yourself.

Whatever just happened – hurt. It’s ok that you feel hurt if someone insults you. Seriously – how else are you supposed to feel?

I find once I acknowledge my hurt feelings – the feeling no longer has power over me. It’s just something I’m experiencing in the moment.

Second: Why am I feeling this emotion?

I’m feeling this way because someone said or did something that upset me. These things happen. To everyone at some point.

Did this person intent to hurt me? Or was it an accident? Does it even matter? Answer – no – it does not matter. The point of thinking these thoughts is to get you out of your own head and your own hurt and thinking rationally about the situation.

Third: Do you need to feel hurt?

No. You don’t. Why? Because while this behavior was directed at you – and impacted you – it wasn’t about you- it was about this other person. What do they have going on? Why would they behave this way? You may never know.

Fourth – Compassion for the person who hurt you

It doesn’t matter WHY they behaved that way. The reality is – they did. But thinking about why – and specifically – trying to give them the benefit of the doubt – or even better – coming to the conclusion that – their behavior has nothing to do with you – is where you find release from the hurt.

Their behavior isn’t about you. It’s about them. And whatever it is they have going on at the time. You were just – a convenient target. While their behavior was directed about you – it wasn’t about YOU – it was about them and their hurt being so much that they are spreading their hurt to others.

You don’t need to feel hurt just because someone else is hurt and wants you to feel like them. You should feel compassion for them – because – they are hurting.

Let me give you an example. I sing along to musak in the stores. All the time. Often – loudly if I like the song. Often – people smile and sing along with me. Musak is bonding.

Not everyone likes musak. Some people are having a bad day and the last thing they want to see is someone singing along to a song they don’t even like. Harumph.

Well – one time – I was happily singing along to something and some guy came up to me and told me I sing horribly. I was hurt! I sing badly? Really?

My very next thought was – wait a minute. I sing wonderfully. I mean – seriously – I used to be a professional singer! I’ve been recorded! I sing just fine.

And then I thought – the magic thoughts. What sort of person goes up to a complete stranger in a store – to insult them? What must be going on in their life – that that is how they acted? Whatever it is – it’s not good. And that person deserves my compassion.

Compassion is like having a magic force field around you

The outline around the girl on the cover of my book – illustrates the magic force field of compassion

As soon as I thought compassionately about the other person – my hurt – went away. It’s really powerful.

The way to not take things personally – is to learn how to reframe what is happening – so that you understand – it’s not about you – even though it happened to you. It’s about this other person – and that other person – is probably going through something and deserves your compassion.


Ok – not done – this takes practice. Which is why I have so many books and online courses about this. I suggest – this one.