Why you take things personally

Let it go like water off a ducks back

“Sometimes when people think they’re putting obstacles in your path, they’re actually laying your stepping-stones. You just got to recognize them as one and the same”

~Daniel Black  “Perfect Peace”

Do you take things personally?

Something goes wrong in your life and you immediately think, “What did I do wrong?”

Someone is angry with you and you ask: “How did I make him angry?”

Someone doesn’t text back and you wonder: “Why doesn’t he like me?”

Does this sound like you?

You are not alone! We all do this. It is perfectly human to take things personally. But it doesn’t feel good. No siree, it doesn’t feel good at all!

This is what happens.

We humans, long for order. When something isn’t orderly, we have to figure it out, put it into a little box and make it orderly. Blame is the easiest way to do that.

When you are little and there is chaos around you, you will most likely blame yourself. If this happens, you are even more vulnerable as an adult.

At any age, when something happens that doesn’t make sense, you blame. You can blame yourself or blame another party, but mostly it’s both (which can be even more troubling.) We conclude blame and settle our need to make sense of the world, and actually, it adds to the confusion.

In this video I share with you two ways to get out of the prison of blame.

Here’s your practical guide to stop taking things so personally

1. Taking a step back

2. Say it out loud

I know you can do it! Here’s how:

How to Stop Taking Things Personally

Why you take things personally Click To Tweet

First of all, be gentle with yourself. Don’t use this info to beat yourself up because you are making yourself unhappy. You are just doing what all of us do. You are no different from everybody else. Love yourself exactly as you are right now. Get why you feel this way and have compassion. Blow a kiss to yourself.

Instead, take this video as relief that you can do something about it! Get away from the chaos of it, by taking a step back and saying it out loud so your rational and relational self can have at it and help you realize all of the other players and their parts in the mix.

Sometimes when we are too close we see things one way, but there might be other ways to see them. Have you made a conclusion about an event, and later realized it was something else?

Tell me about it in the comment section. What did you think originally when you took it personally, and what did you find out that made you feel a whole big bunch better?

29 thoughts on “Why you take things personally”

  1. If I feel guilty and afraid of losing someone I love, everything the person says or does looks like a confirmation that my fear is justified, and that the person is upset. I have learned to trust others. I’m still learning to trust myself.

    1. This comment really helped me this morning. I have the same fear of losing people from a death standpoint and I never realized how many crazy made-up conclusions I have suffered over in my head!! I ” think ” because someone is not answering me or responding in someway, that they have ” died ” and Its going to hurt so bad because I will never see them…I’m so grateful that I have been able to drastically curb this craziness and I don’t suffer like this anymore. The UN-enlightened (with-out Light ) mind can be a very scary and deceptive place.

      1. It’s funny that you said you think the person “died”. I never thought of it as death of the person, but death of the relationship and “rebirth” of the person in a better life where I’m not included. I “grieve” the relationship, and yes, it hurts like hell.

        1. Don’t let it hurt before it happens, this can not only be a waste of so much emotional pain, but it can actually put a wrench in the relationship. Believe it or not, it is very rare for relationships to end. (the ones you don’t want to). Don’t worry so much about this! You can speand years worrying about this in a relationship or just enjoy the relationship. 🙂

      2. Don’t be afraid of being vulnerable. It makes you great. At least stats are on your side. People are rarely dead when they don’t answer a text. Not replying is too common for these to variable to have any significant connection. 😉

    2. Nikky,

      Trusting others and trusting yourself are the same. If you trust yourself, you can trust anyone, because you know you can handle things. If you don’t trust yourself, you cannot trust anyone. How you apporach yourself is how you approach everyone. Even though it may feel different to you- like opposites-it may feel the same to them. (Sensative people.) I made a video this morning that comes out in a few weeks that will hopefully speak to this fear of losing and being insecure. I am hoping that will help since this is a problem many people have! <3

      1. I can’t wait to watch that video. What I mean by trusting myself, is trusting that I am “good enough” for the other person

  2. Hi Jodi,

    Lovely video indeed 🙂

    Yes, when things aren’t going right, we tend to blame the other person or ourselves for the problem or situation we’ve landed ourselves into. We tend to take it all on ourselves or personally, which only makes us feel horrid and we suffer from low self-esteem – there goes another day kind of feeling. I do a lot of self-talk in such a case and lift myself out of the situation within seconds – there is nothing that works better 🙂

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

    1. I use self talk also! Some things bear repeating because that negative voice is relentless so must our self talk be! Thanks for contributing to the conversation! You have a great week too!

  3. Love the Video Jodi, what an Awesome topic. The ego is part of this I believe. We all have one, and the illusion of self can make it very challenging. Its hard to see with clarity that the world doesn’t revolve around us. All through my life I felt people picked on me a lot for re-acting to things so personally or with a lot of passion. This made me an easy and regular target because they knew they would get a reaction. Not in a bullying way, sometimes I could feel the love, but It always felt like I was being attacked. The issue at hand though is why did I always react with so much passion and always relate the topic directly to me?? I think we do this because of Un-resolved Pain, Fear, and/or even Guilt. It seems our brain/ego can take any outside situation and immediately relate it to whatever unresolved issues of the “self” that exist. Recently I’ve made large strides in my life and when I remain “Present” and enlightened less situations become about ME. I even begin to realize that things that used to look like obstacles or road blocks are actually in truth wide open highways or stepping-stones along the journey.

    1. You got it! When we think it is about us, it is the self same problem that causes us to see a problem. When we don’t think it is about us, the energy of it goes away- yes, clearing our view. The problem goes away when we don’t see it anymore. (For everyone involved if you can imagine, but that pretty advanced stuff!)

    1. Haha, Mostly I am just reminding myself up here. I relate to what people tell me because I am a human on my own journey of trying to navigate my own feelings. Sometimes it seems like many of my conversations with people are the same and it means that is work that I need to do! We are too peas in a pod! Actually this is one big pod and we are all in here, just as vulnerable as everyone else!

  4. This is such a hard one for me. I need to always be working on it. There are so many negative voices in my head, repeating negative things said to me in the past & in my current situation. This past weekend I needed to text someone, but I was afraid of being rejected or not answered. I feel like, even though I needed help, I wasn’t worthy or important enough to the person to bother them so I didn’t text them like I’m supposed to when my feelings overwhelm me. This morning I saw the person, told them what I just wrote & the person told me I was wrong to think that I ever bother her. I was reassured (again) by the person that it’s ok to text them any day, anytime. I admit that I am stuck in my own prison. I’m so afraid of doing something wrong & losing people. It has happened to me many times & I don’t know why. Those old stories constantly play out in my head & my fear of rejection or losing another person takes over. I am so sensitive about this, that just writing about it makes me cry. Jodi hit the nail on the head for me with this subject. When I saw what the topic was, I was even too afraid to watch the video. I had to talk myself into it. I’m glad I got the courage up to watch it. Jodi, you have such a gentle & soothing way about you & it really comes through in your videos. I’m so glad you decided to do them. They (you) really help.

  5. Most things I don’t take personally but some things I do. I do have times when I’m more sensitive than other times, so I have to consider what’s going on in my world that I’m overthinking a situation, also considering everybody is coming from a different place and with that comes a different perspective.
    totsymae1011 recently posted..On Being GratefulMy Profile

  6. You spoke to me with this video, Jodi. I think I’m the queen of “taking it personally.” I have to be very mindful about the fact that I don’t control how others feel or what they say or do. Everything is not about me. I think with OCD, it is really easy to take things personally because I fear that if I don’t do certain compulsions, bad things will happen–and it will be my fault. Learning to let go of the false sense of responsibility has helped me tremendously with OCD.
    Tina Fariss Barbour recently posted..The gardening has startedMy Profile

  7. Great Video!! It makes so much sense – I understand what it means to take things personally & you are right on when you characterize it as a prison – because it is !!
    It is so easy to get trapped and just hate yourself!! And often, as you say, it has nothing to do with you!! But he tape keeps playing and it is SOOO HARD to step back. I measure myself by how long it takes me to let go of something and just breathe!! Lately, with mindfulness meditation, it is getting better but it is still such a Whammy!!
    I am looking forward to the retreat thjis weekend – it will be nice to look at more strategies to feel worthy and whole!!

  8. You’re spot on that we tend to personalize everything. Granted there are times when a person ‘owns’ an issue, but this is not always the case. I have been to wonder the same thing, never so much as when I started submitting stories…
    Once the rejection came I’d ask..’what’s wrong with me… why don’t they like my story.. It wasn’t a good place to be. Even in life if something goes amuck, i can easily see myself asking… is it me? Your suggestion to step back is perfect and where I eventually get around to after I’ve interrogated my good self needlessly.
    Brenda Moguez recently posted..Being True To YourselfMy Profile

  9. Hi Jodi,

    I am sorry for being so late, I am travelling and in different time zone and without any connections, attending wedding functions…enjoying though but missing you all!!

    I rarely take things personally and if I have to, I take care to sort them out almost immediately. I prefer to be straight forward…confront the situation or the person, sometimes it becomes too heated up, relationships do suffer but I don’t like to keep any baggage that may hurt me for a long time. If there happens to be…I try to forgive and forget.

    Thanks for sharing a lovely video, along with an inspiring message.
    Balroop Singh recently posted..Are you Enlightened…in the real sense?My Profile

  10. This is a tough one, Jodi. It’s so darn hard sometimes not to take it personally. I think you really need discipline and not let your emotions get the better of you. I try not to let it get to me, and my logical brain will try to talk me out of it, but inside I’m heaving with emotion. Anyway, thanks for the tips. Loved your video. Don’t think I’ve ever told you, but you have a great voice and a sweet accent. I could listen all day.
    monicastangledweb recently posted..The Parallel Parking LamentMy Profile

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