how to stop taking things personally


Criticism is an inevitable part of life and everyone has something they are sensitive about. If you can face fair negative feedback without overreacting, you will escape feeling hurt and shamed. Always feeling like you are being attacked is emotionally draining. To calmly continue with your day and not drown in misery, you need to learn how not to take things personally. It will help give you more control over how you respond, your emotions and your energy levels. Here are some strategies.


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1- Know Your Inherent Self-Worth


Take time to really know yourself. Make a list of your positive traits and call them to mind when you feel yourself getting sensitive.


2- Know Your Emotional Triggers


Perhaps a parent was overly critical and you tried to please them, for example. Someone like them pointing out a mistake could make you feel more sensitive.


emotional triggers


3- Consider the Source


Does the critique come from a person you respect? Do they know you? These questions can help you decide whether to take it seriously or with a grain of salt.


4- Don’t Give Them a Reason


If you are always transparent and you always act out of good intentions, you have evidence that the over-critical people are wrong.


5- Recognize the “Spotlight Effect”


You may think that you picked up on some criticism when the reality is that the person wasn’t talking about you at all.


spotlight effect


6- Stop Worrying What People Think


You should care about what you and the people who know and love you think of you. Strangers and acquaintances volunteering opinions have nothing to do with you.


7- Be Too Busy to Care

If you dwell endlessly, you may have too much time on your hands. Next time you ruminate about feeling belittled, find something more productive to do.


in their shoes


8- Put Yourself in Their Shoes


Don’t react to their words. Think about where they might be coming from. It will help you to see the situation from a different perspective.


9- Shift Focus


Find a way to help others. It will make you feel better and get you out of the self-absorbed mode that makes you think everybody is watching you.



It may feel like an overambitious goal, right now. But, if you can work towards seeing things with greater clarity, you will learn how to respond rather than react.


Do you need help? Call (510) 497-4174 today to schedule your free consultation with one of our rigorously trained therapists.


This post was written by Lani Gouws on behalf of The Bridge Therapy Center. If you have any questions or require more information, please contact Lani here: