Ok so a long while ago I posted about #90 – 75 skills every woman should know. (here) I am hoping to “master” 5 for this list, and I have been working on 3. Learn to take criticism, stop worrying what others think of you, and don’t take things personally. I have been working on them for months, and they actually took a lot more than just saying ok I’m going to do this and then bam, it’s done. My brain doesn’t work like other people’s and I actually got some help with these because a lot of my issues stem from something else that happened in my life.
My brother. Sigh. Always back to my brother.
I’ve never really been…normal…but I used to be fun. I used to love life and people and doing things. And then my brother got arrested, and I felt completely abandoned by everyone, and I feel in this super dark hole and changed. In a bad way. I didn’t want to go out anymore because I was the sister of a felon and hello, people could totally tell that and they were judging me. JUDGING.
OF COURSE they were not. Because that is NOT rational at all. And when I walk into a random store that I know NOT ONE of those people even know my brother is a felon and therefore cannot make judgments based on that. DUH. BIG FAT DUH.
I am very happy to say that I don’t care what other people – well, strangers – think of me. I mean, clearly, I don’t want people I know in real life to hate me (though if they are going to hate me because my brother is a felon then fuck them). But, as far as going into a restaurant alone. Can do. Have done. Did not die. And I actually enjoyed it. When I’m in a store I don’t even notice if people look at me (because, you know, everyone used to stare at me but not in an OMG she’s hot kinda way). I feel a LOT more confident with myself in general.
So thanks to my therapist for helping me through this one. I really should have seen her a long ass time ago.
The other 2, taking the criticism and the taking things personally, those are a little harder to master. I am trying, but it is hard. With the criticism one, I am making progress and I’m ok with progress because it’s better than it was. I am being more receptive, and also, being able to give it less blunt and bitchy. Which I think is a really good thing.
I said before, in my original post, that I do know that really deep down that people aren’t “out to get me” and that most people don’t plan their days around trying to hurt me. But recently, in the last few months, I have been very hurt by two-used to be super important-people in my life. And it was hard to not take that personally. Because I was specifically told that they didn’t care how what they did made me feel and it didn’t matter to them if it ruined our friendship. That felt super personal. And while I’ve said some harsh words over the subject, I’ve definitely had harsh words, by two people, thrown at me. (2 against 1, not so fun) And it really feels personal. The entire thing. And there has never been any “You know, I can see your point and I can understand where you are coming from, but that was not our intention.” Maybe it wouldn’t feel so personal if I knew it wasn’t.
So yeah, I’m a ways off on that one. But just for that one specific instance. Otherwise, I’m learning to joke again – and be joked on. And I can laugh at them. And at myself. And I don’t secretly want to cry on the inside because I think that that joke wasn’t really a joke but words said to really hurt me. It’s fun. So I guess I’m more ahead than I thought, but that one thing still brings me down. I’ve kind of put it out of my life, but it isn’t as easy as you think.