Be a stronger you and give less of a fuck
6th Apr 20187m48s
- Sometimes my mind goes into this loop where I'm thinking about something nasty that someone said to me, or something someone did, or something someone did to piss me off. And I start to create a narrative in my mind. And this is something that a lot of us do. So, for example with me in my life I've had people be racist to me and sometimes I think about that, and I think about all the examples which were similar to that that happened to me in my life, and then I start to paint this broad picture of say, everyone who belongs to that group were the same. Like all those people they don't like me because of my skin color, or whatever, that's right. And they're all the same. And this sort of thinking is when we paint these broad brush strokes about people based on something that happened to us. And the problem of course is, deep down we know that not every single person who belongs to that group or that whatever is gonna be exactly the same. We know that people are different, right? But because we're feeling hurt, we're feeling angry, we're feeling upset, we just end up painting these broad brush strokes. And it's easier to think that way. It's easier to just simplify things and say, well, they're all like that, or they're all like this. And it might not even be something that happened to us, it might just be some opinion that we have. So, often times I hear people say, I don't wanna travel to this country because they're all like this over there, or I don't like people from this culture because they all do this. And obviously if you think about it intellectually it doesn't make sense statistically speaking that everybody who belongs to that culture, or country, or group is gonna be exactly the same, or doing that exact same thing. They're gonna be exceptions. Even if the majority do it, they're still gonna be exceptions to it, but as human beings we find it simpler to just simplify things and paint these broad brush strokes. And then this sort of double whammy, so let's say someone said something nasty to you. So you're upset, right? But then, of course if you wanna go out there and make great connections with people, you can't be going out feeling angry or upset. You've gotta be open, you've gotta be someone that people want to know. But because you're upset you're not gonna be open. And so then, people will detect that from you. They'll sense that from you and think, this person's angry, or this person's not a very friendly person to be around. I mean a good example of this, let's say you've had a lot of racism in your life. And that's pissed you off, and it makes you angry. And then you see those people who said those things to you as the opponent, the author, the enemy, right? And every time you meet someone like that you're not thinking about this. You're thinking about this, and you're thinking how they might be the same as those other people you met. And that stops you from really connecting with them because maybe they're not like that. Maybe they're very open minded people. So that's the double whammy of having that negative mindset. And it sucks, you know it really sucks. So, what are the ways in which you can sort of get around this? And I've been thinking about this because I have these thoughts coming into my mind every now and then about something someone said, or how among certain groups I've struggled, and what I think is the best way to do it is to become strong within yourself. People are gonna say shit to you man. People are gonna say mean things, do mean things. People are gonna let you down. But what can't happen is that these things affect you over the long term. Maybe in the moment you get pissed off and it upsets you, but you gonna be able to get over it quickly. And you can only do that if you're strong within yourself. If you know who you are, and you're strong within yourself, and then you can see clearly why this person did what they did, or said what they said. A lot of times people say nasty things just to feel good about themselves. And what they're saying isn't true. There's nothing anyone can say to you that to invalidate your identity. Not really, unless you let them in your mind. So, being strong within yourself is really the way forward. And one of the ways to do that, or one of the key ingredients for that is to basically not give a fuck. Right, what people think of you? Now obviously there's a, if you just take that to the extreme then you can end up really not caring what even the people who care about you think about you. Ignoring everybody's opinion, that's not good. But you know what I mean, right? It's the situations where you know it's somebody who doesn't really care about you, who's saying something mean to you, something nasty to you. You have to let go completely of what that person is saying. And they're two thing to this. Not giving a fuck means you don't dwell on what they say, and you don't stop painting these broad brush strokes creating grand narratives about it, about how everyone who's like them, it's gonna be the same. And the second thing that comes out of it is that, because you can let it go quickly, you're also not gonna let it affect you going forward in your life, right? 'Cause that's the thing. You start to see the truth in what it is. You realize that all these thing that people are saying, they don't really affect you, they don't have to affect you. They don't have to affect what you're capable of. You can still create a great life for yourself. Of course, this is easier said than done, right? I mean, I'm trying all the time to give less of a fuck, but my natural instinct is to care. I'm self conscious, I've always been self conscious. I'm a lot less than I use to be, but I still am. And I think most people are. It's really hard to be that strong and to really not give a fuck, because in some level we need social approval, we want social approval. We want to know that who we are, and how we are is looked upon favorably by other people because we need other people's help to get things done. So, that's the balance that I'm talking about. You have to be able to strike that balance. And I think that takes practice and experience. And that's something I'm still learning myself, and it's worth doing. Just to give yourself that peace of mind and to not be affected in the longterm by the things people say to you, things people do to you. It also means you get angry less often. And you don't wanna live your life being angry. You don't wanna live your life being upset about things, or running through these thought patterns, these loops in your mind. The other thing about becoming strong within yourself and not giving a fuck is, you start to form an identity that it's less dependent on what other people think about you, and what other people say about you. And that's more dependent on how you drive yourself as a person. You also compare yourself less to other people. You compare yourself more to yourself. Did I improve on who I was yesterday? Did I improve on who I was a week before? And that's a much healthier way to live your life, right? 'Cause the thing is, if you compare yourself to other people I mean, they're might be some people you better than, but they'll definitely be someone who you're not as good as. And so there's always this chance that it doesn't work out. And the other problem of course with comparison is, there's this implication, there's assumption imply within the comparison that, that person is worth comparing against, right? Think about it. If you're comparing yourself to somebody you've already assumed that that person is worth comparing against. And what if that person is somebody who says nasty things, or there's something about them that doesn't quite agree with how you do things? Do you still wanna compare yourself to that person? I mean, of course they're people that we consider heroes, people who inspire us, and we compare ourselves to those people. And that's okay as long as we don't rank ourselves down just 'cause we're not as good as them. We should use the fact that they're doing something better to inspire us, become better our ourselves. And ultimately that means coming back to comparing ourselves to ourselves. Who was I yesterday? Who am I today? And doing that, and being strong within yourself, and doing things to make yourself strong, taking risks, doing things that aren't comfortable so you grow. That's gonna help you become stronger and it's gonna make it easier for you to give less of a fuck when you meet people who aren't quite the friendly type, let's say. So that's something that I'm working on in my life and as it get better and better, I see more clearly why it's such a good thing to do. And I hope you can do it too.