I. am. SENSITIVE. Meaning, I do not like teasing, mean / spiteful statements, I do not like being yelled at, I do not like name-calling or teasing, and I WILL likely cry if my Uber driver doesn’t like me.
THIS SAID being this sensitive can be exhausting. There are so many people out there, some of which can be a little harsh or mean when they speak. Some have different ideas of what sensitivity means, and some are not super emotionally intelligent. So, how do you cope with someone being mean or rude to you? This is how I started to do it:
1. CONFIDENCE VS EGO
An ego can be bruised, but self confidence cannot be. Here is the difference, between ego and confidence. Ego seeks approval from others, while confidence seeks approval from oneself. Ego is about being the best in the world, confidence is about being the best version of you.
Two people want to pursue their dreams of becoming famous. Person A has no confidence but rather a large ego, Person B has no ego but confidence in themselves. Person A regards Person B as their competition. They want to be better than them, they want to get every role they audition for, and they want to be the best actor in the entire world. And so, they are crushed and DEVESTATED when a casting director rejects them for the role, they are envious of their competition and starts to insult Person B out of spite when they land a role. Person A does not take criticism well, instead they take it as a personal attack. They cry about it without learning from it. They lash out at those who reject them, and eventually, they give up. “Acting just isn’t for me!” Person A will exclaim. “Clearly I suck at it, I keep getting rejected!”
Person B has a different approach. Person B doesn’t want to be the best actor in the room, in fact if they were, they would switch rooms. Person B wants to be the best version of themselves. Like Person A, Person B also has a dream of being famous. But it is not for the same reason, Person B wants to be famous to spread their message, to have a platform for positivity, and because fame opens the door to new opportunities, new connections, and learning opportunities from other top tier artists in their field. Person B has a side job because they aren’t too proud to work side-jobs to make extra money so they can keep a consistent income. Person B attends every audition they can. They also get sad when they get rejected, but they use it as a learning opportunity and reflect on the opportunity. Person B ahs a journal where they jot down what could have gone better after each audition. Even the successful ones. Person B meets Person A and acknowledges their skill. They learn from Person A, and they are not threatened by them. They regard Person A as their equal and is excited to learn from them. Person B is happy for Person A when they land the role they wanted. When Person A insults Person B and criticizes their acting, Person B may still cry and feel sad, but they will not let their opinion stop them from feeling good about themselves. Person B knows that Person A is speaking from a place of insecurity and Person B has faith that Person A will grow overtime. When Person A says they want to quit acting, Person B convinces them not to.
So Person B looks more mature and overall happier, but is Person B more successful? Even despite them encouraging their competition to be the best version of themselves? Yes. Here is why.
Person A got rejected from a role they wanted, so they cancelled all of their auditions for the week to sulk and feel bad about the loss. They spend the majority of their time and energy thinking up ways to hurt Person B, or feeling envious of Person B. Rather than acknowledging Person B’s skills, Person A insults them. They do not try to learn from Person B, they try to put Person B down and directs their attention into hurting them instead of improving. Person B on the other hand is also rejected for the same role. Person B is equally disappointed but still jots down their mistakes and their positive qualities in their journal. Person B keeps their auditions for the week and lands two roles from two separate auditions that week.
Person B is more consistent and they do not regard rejection as a personal attack. They regard others attitudes and hurtful actions against them as a reflection of them and NOT a reflection of who they are as a person.
When we live our lives from a place of self-confidence, and not from a state of ego, we will be more like Person B.
2. KEEP A POSITIVE LIKE-MINDED GROUP
If you are finding that you are getting angered easily recently, it is time to do some self-reflection. If after doing that self-reflection you find the issue has not stopped, it is time to examine your external world.
Who is in your social circle? Are they emotionally intelligent? Are they empathetic and compassionate when they speak? Do they frequently gaslight you by calling you, “too sensitive?” If this is the case, the problem is not necessarily with you. It is ok to be friends with people who are ego-led over confidence led, but you CANNOT spend all of your time around people like this. It will be draining. You need to keep these people at arms reach. Being too close with people who are mean or rude is not a good way to spend your time.
Sometimes your anger is your protectant. It is there for a reason. Someone in your social circle is making you feel this way. While Person B in the scenario above encourages Person A, they are not necessarily best friends. Person B has a friend group of likeminded people and doesn’t spend too much time with Person A. Even when Person B doesn’t have as many friends, Person B still makes sure to spend time alone with their own thoughts and does not surround themselves with too many ego-driven people.
3. FEEL YOUR EMOTIONS
Some people are just plain rude! And this isn’t fun to deal with. Yes, rude people will hurt your feelings, but no that doesn’t mean you have to let them ruin your day. Acknowledge your feelings and come to terms with the fact that this person wronged you. Now you rightfully feel angry, frustrated, and sad. But acknowledge that something is not right with that person. They are not well and they are likely hurting more than you know. This is not your responsibility, but there’s to work through.
YOUR responsibility is to distance yourselves from these people and acknowledge that they are not good company for you. Nothing they say is true about you. They are dealing with their own insecurities they are projecting onto you. And that is for them to deal with, not you.
Feel your emotions, then accept what is. They are not at the same place or maturity as you right now and it might take them years, sometimes a lifetime, to get to that place. They have to get their on their own, but you don’t have to let them hurt you in the meanwhile. Take your space and learn from their mistakes.
4. BUILD YOURSELF UP AND DO NOT COMPARE
Be the absolute best version of YOU every day. Don’t be the best version of Ariana Grande, of Selena Gomez, as Justin Timberlake… be the best version of YOU. You are just as worthy, beautiful, talented and you can be just as successful as them. You are just all brilliant in your own ways. When someone exudes confidence, it is not because they are perfect or better than you… it is because they wake up everyday and they strive to be the best version of themselves. Every. Single. Day. That’s what you need to do also. Be the best version of you, and appreciate the best version of others.
5. BE COMFORTABLE ALONE
Relationships are fun! Friendships are lovely, family is wonderful… WHEN they are fulfilling your emotional needs. But life is long. Sometimes, you’re going to run into situations where you need to leave a group of people that no longer serves you. I’ve had several instances like this happen in my life. When people do not serve me and act from a place of ego instead of confidence, I distance myself from them, and rightfully so!
Weak people NEED people, strong people WANT people. I like having friends, but I will not settle for friends who will put me down for the sake of having friends. I like having a family to depend on, but if that situation becomes abusive, I will leave. I like being in love and having a relationship, but if that person is not meeting me halfway with effort and love then that relationship needs to end. And that’s ok.
You need to be comfortable being on your own sometimes. That is the only way you will find the right people for your life. Do not have friends for the sake of having friends, have friends that encourage your growth and success! Not friends who put you down.
Confidence is HARD, but it’s worth it. If you follow these steps, I can guarantee in the long run, things will work in your favour.