I'd like to share what has helped me, from experience not theory.I had struggled with this.Here's the story:I have studied how the brain works for many years.Over time, I realized that my thinking was the source of my "perceived" problem with others.The habitual brain patterns (thoughts) and beliefs (assumptions about truth) were the actual problem.I became aware that I had taught my mind to interpret the opinions and ideas of others in a manner that caused me to perceive myself as somehow missing the mark. Feeling stress, anxiety, and fear were often the result.So what?Here is the best of what I discovered. You will certainly use parts of it to create your own solution.This may seem overly simplified. That's probably a sign it is useful.Here's what I decided to do:Listen to them, but from a psychological balcony... observation, but no judgement (of yourself or them).Let them own what they say. You can choose to open the door and let it in, and impact you. Or, you can simply observe it and choose not to give their opinion any meaning.You might say, "that's an interesting way to look at things..."Here is what I did to create the change:1. Instruct your mind that you have changed. This gets the unconscious mind ready.2. Instruct your mind that you are going to try something new. I literally said to my unconscious brain, "You will allow others to have their opinion. That's ok. It is their opinion.""I care what they say... But not that much."3. Repeat and modify until you become the person you wish to be.Timeframe? Starting and maintaining through the psychological discomfort/pain (we call cognitive dissonance) is the most critical milestone. It feels silly, strange, and often like you can't win. But, just give it a week or so.Each time you choose to persist in this, you will gain a little more insight and skill.This is brain training. That is all (in my experience)What NOT to do?1. In my experience, asking "Why" is fruitless. The pursuit of the "Why" seems to generate psychological loops that deepen the pattern.2. Do not bother to judge yourself. Do this like a game... a fun little experiment. You have the creative license. Play with it.I have been exercising this for 2 years and it has been transformative.Take what is relevant and useful. Leave what is not.All the best,Jamie
I have a theory that has served me well: 10% of all the people you'll meet will like you, no matter what. Another 10% will hate you, no matter what. The other 80% have no feelings about you, either way. They don't know you exist and don't care."C'mon... Only 10%?" Need proof? Think about the last 10 people you encountered... store cashiers, restaurant waiters, people you met at the last party you attended, new co-workers... Can you even remember the last 10?10% of all the people we encounter is PLENTY.Those 10% are your 'peeps'. Your tribe. You can be yourself with them. Who you are is exactly who they're attracted to. They are people whose souls just resonate with yours. ...Who knows why? They don't ask you to prove anything. They like you despite your differing opinions. They like you despite your bad choices. They like you despite your failures. They are happy for your every success. (In contrast to that 10% who can't stand you, who dislike you even more with each success.)We'll never win over that 90%. Why waste the energy? Why try to change yourself to please them? Better to deal with them with a polite detachment and spend your emotional energy on your 10%.10% is PLENTY!
Two points. The first from my late teens, and about two friends who were extremely quiet. Both unassuming, decent, nice guys. It always impressed me to see how many people (especially women) thought my buddies were interesting, mysterious, and even intriguing.I remember being jealous and wishing I could be quiet. But, to paraphrase an old joke, “I tried being quiet once. It was the worst fifteen minutes of my life.”One of them, let’s call him Bill, was anything but interesting or mysterious. That was until the coolest guy in the group, let’s call him Paul, turned to Bill and deemed (like the Wizard of Oz), “Bill, what you need is some personality. From now on, I’m calling you Omar.”As crazy as it might sound, that obnoxious gesture changed Bill/Omar’s life, especially with women. Overnight, Bill went from being invisible to a chick magnet.Lesson: As Henry Ford put it, “Never complain, never explain.” Instead of answering with words, respond with a smile (while thinking, “If I told you, I’d have to kill you!”).Second. When I started a business that required talking multiple retailers into giving up prime counter space (to test market my products) I discovered a trick/hack to deal with most store owners’ knee jerk refusals.The challenge was to get owners to help me understand why they weren’t interested. Putting them on the spot invariably elicited weak, off-the-cuff, illogical responses which was, more times than not, were relatively easy to counter with logic. Most times, logical responses were enough to change a no to a yes.Just as I was letting a string of successes go to my head a sharp store owner responded to my “why not” with a simple but very firm, “Because I don’t want to.” Check mate.Lesson: As Henry Ford put it, “Never complain, never explain.” Instead of providing a detailed answer, respond with a simple, firm, unembellished, “Because I’m quiet!” If necessary, additional questions can be answered with “Because I am.” As opposed to, for example, saying, “Because I like being quiet” which leaves you open to questions about why you “like” being quiet.
First step - accept the fact that you are - utterly and irrevocably - human.Listening to others and getting affected by their opinions is a part of that process. You're not living in a vacuum. Embrace it.I'm guessing that, you are, however, talking about negative criticism in particular. So let's focus on that.Listen. Listen to everything. Pay attention to what even the worst of your enemies are saying. But stop right there.Only absorb the gist of what people are telling you - never, ever focus on the words used. Not everybody will use their words correctly, and most quarrel and misunderstanding occur over semantics. Just focus on the message, not on the delivery.Ignore words spoken in anger, and words spoken in a state of extreme happiness. They are empty.Extract the message of what you hear and filter everything else out. Ask yourself if what the person talking to you means something to you - only pay heed to words o people who truly have a place in your heart.View yourself as a third party and judge whether the words are true or not. Sometimes, even the harshest of words can hold the hardest of facts. Learn to respect that.accept the fact that only the ones closest to us can truly hurt us. Tell yourself that every time their words bother you.Remember - words can make you or break you, but they are also your slaves if you know how to use them well, whether as the listener or the speaker. Don't expect yourself to not be bothered by what people say to you - you need external critiquing to grow as a person. Be open to change, and react appropriately ( as little as you can). Most people only speak harshly to get a reaction - once you stop pandering to these people, you'll find the only ones talking are the ones with something substantial to say. Respect their opinions. Most importantly, tell yourself that it's okay to be hurt by what people say - it's what makes us human. Breaking down and building yourself up is a part of the process. Once you devalue the incidence, you'll automatically be less affected by the outcome.