It’s normal to desire respect. Humans are social animals after all, and we desire to be respected by our tribemates. Therefore, it makes sense that criticism can sting and inflict emotional distress. “Never take anything personally since doing so will only cause you to suffer needlessly.
In fact, researchers in a recent study carefully examined participants’ reactions to social evaluation-related movies that were both approving and disapproving. Some individuals’ behavior was examined by researchers as they watched recordings of people expressing emotions in good, negative, and neutral ways. The findings indicated that “criticism affected everyone.”
While some remarks or acts are in fact offensive, it’s likely that you have a tendency to take things personally if you discover that your feelings are hurt frequently or if you tend to believe that someone was intentionally trying to upset you emotionally.
Continue reading to find out why individuals take things personally, how to tell when you’re taking something too personally, and how to recognize the situations in which doing so might be advantageous for you. You’ll also discover how to stop personalizing everything.
What Leads People to Personalize Things?
Although caring about what other people think of us is normal, it shouldn’t get in the way of who we are. There are several reasons why humans take things personally, including the following:
- Critical self-talk. We could convince ourselves repeatedly that we’re not good enough or that everything is always our fault. We will therefore readily accept unfavorable statements made about us when they are made.
- A low sense of self. People with poor self-esteem occasionally worry excessively about what other people may think. They could interpret events very personally.
- Childhood trauma Our perception that we deserve to be laughed at or humiliated can be influenced by parental blame and a lack of emotional support throughout our formative years.
- Anxiety conditions. People with social anxiety have a great fear of criticism and embarrassment.
- Perfectionism. Perfectionists struggle when others point out their flaws because they have high expectations for themselves.
- Stress or exhaustion. When you’re not feeling your best, you could be more likely to misread someone else’s remarks.
- Sensitivity to emotions. You can take things more personally if you’re an extremely sensitive person.
How to Quit Personalizing Everything
Here are a few strategies you can employ after being offended so that you don’t feel unhappy when you get home:
• Develop emotional fortitude.
• Be forgiving of others’ mistakes because it’s conceivable that you misheard what they said.
• Request clarification from the speaker.
• Quit worrying about what other people may think of you.
• Praise yourself for your abilities.
• Practice mindfulness to stay in the moment and reduce stress.
• Keep a thought journal.
• Tell yourself self-affirmations over and over.