In the last two posts we talked about perfection and how you shouldn't try to be perfect all of the time. Sometimes we try to be perfect so that others will see us in a more favorable light. The thing is, this isn't necessary.
We shouldn't be trying to be perfect in order to please others or to avoid being criticized by them. The only person you need to please and see in a favorable light is YOU!
Sometimes we forget about this, especially when we've been bullied, because we want to avoid further bullying. The problem is that this doesn't work. And as we get older and go through other life experiences, we keep reverting to this way of thinking.
You probably know the feeling when it seems like no matter what you do you can't win with another person. This is usually upsetting to us because we want to please that other person. We want them to like us.
When we've been bullied, we develop an unrealistic and unhealthy desire to please others.
I used to avoid conflict like the plague. Honestly, I still don't like it very much. I didn't like conflict in the past because of how it made me feel. I would feel like I was the bad guy even if the other person was in the wrong. I felt bad about myself for not being very good at handling conflict. I just didn't know how to stand up for myself.
Being bullied causes you to develop low self-esteem and a lack of confidence, which makes conflict very traumatic. It's even worse when you still feel this way as an adult. If you can't handle conflict as an adult then it's going to be difficult to feel good about yourself and, ultimately, be successful in life.
The key to successfully handling conflict is to like yourself, which will also give you the confidence you will need in these situations. At the end of the day we have to be okay with the person looking back at us in the mirror.
You might make some enemies along the way, but it's unreasonable to think that everyone you ever meet will like you. It's impossible so there's no point trying to please everyone. One of my favorite quotes from Winston Churchill is...
You have enemies? Good. That means you've stood up for something, sometime in your life.
Now I don't think that you should go around trying to make enemies. It's just about accepting the fact that if you stand up for what you believe in, there are going to be others who don't stand with you. If they don't like you for it then let it be. You can't make them like you, nor should you try.
It's important to stand for what you believe in because it will help you to be confident and secure in who you are. When you can get yourself to this point, it's much more difficult for someone to upset you.
Of course it's not easy to accept the fact that some people don't like you. I know this feeling first hand, and I'm still trying to get used to it, but I also know that I feel better for standing up for what I believe in.
When we are born, we don't dislike ourselves. Sure, we don't know the difference for some years, but sometimes there comes a point where other people will cause us to dislike ourselves. This isn't right and we have to work to get to a point where we do like ourselves again.
If there's something you don't like about yourself then fix it, but not because someone else wants you to.
Seriously, if there's some quality about you that is holding you back from liking who you are then do something about it. One of the great things in life is having the ability to change, but you have to want it bad enough. How badly do you want it?
Maybe you have low self-esteem or you lack confidence in social situations. That's okay. It's not a life sentence. If you work on whatever it is that you don't like about yourself for a little bit each day, you will make progress. Eventually people will notice this change in you and you'll feel good about that.
I want to leave you with an action step to take away from this post. When you look at yourself in the mirror tomorrow morning, I want you to look yourself in the eye and say "I love you." That might seem silly to you right now and you might feel uncomfortable saying it, but do it anyway. And then I want you to keep doing it every morning and let me know what it has done for you.
Remember, the only person you need to like you is you. That's where it all begins when it comes to being happy in this life. You are where it all begins.
Please leave a comment and let me know if you have any stories or questions.
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