It can be easy to feel hurt by the strong words your loved ones tell you. You might find yourself wondering why they would say something like that to you? What have you done to deserve that kind of pain? Anyone who has ever been in a close relationship knows that problems can get out of hand when feelings of resentment arise. The following article finally explains to you why it’s not all about you… and how you can easily let go of those resentful feelings.

Been hurt lately?

What are you supposed to do when you feel hurt by someone else’s words? Should you come back with words that are just as painful? Should you take to heart what they’re saying and walk away ashamed? Typically people don’t like either of these options, and we tend to agree. The most effective way to put an end to being hurt once and for all is to change the way you perceive their words. In other words, don’t take it personally. We know that sounds tough, but there’s a simple way to accomplish this. As you're interacting with others keep in mind that you are not the root of their issues—it’s not just about you.

~It’s about them too!~

Let’s focus on the basics. There are two main goals when people say things to you: they either have a desire to meet their needs or they’re saying things that support a value they hold. Once you get your head around this idea and put it into practice you’ll know how to let go of resentment and avoid feeling hurt. It’s natural to feel hurt when you believe another person is intentionally hurting you, but when you take yourself out of the equation it’s much easier to avoid those bad feelings.

Consider this scenario: You get a big promotion at work and you are so excited that you call your best friend on your way home that day. You tell her the good news and she replies, “Congratulations, but that’s going to be hard work. I don’t know if you’re up to it.” Whoa. Now the usual response would be to get offended and defensive, but that would only escalate the conflict. Would it make a difference if you learned that your friend was worried that your new promotion would take your time away from her? How would you react if you knew that? What if you learned that she recently got turned down for a promotion at work? When you think about it, there are many possible reasons for your friend’s comments, and none of them have anything to do with you.

~Learning from Others ~

What would the Dalai Lama do if someone approached him and said, “You don’t understand pain or poverty. You have fifty people serving you at any time. You’re just lazy!” Would he get mad and reply, “You have no idea what I do on a daily basis. And what about yourself? Do you even work for a living or do you just go around telling other people they’re lazy?”

I bet you can think of a lot of people who would respond that way, but probably not the Dalai Lama. Why? Is it because he knows a truth that most people have yet to discover?

I’m assuming the Dalai Lama is enlightened to the point where he knows not to get offended by the words of others. He understands that the young man’s words are really an attempt to meet a need, or support something he values; they have nothing to do with the Dalai Lama. He recognizes his role as a sounding board for the young man. He understands that the words have less to do with the him and more to do with the young man’s pain and suffering.

~Getting on with It~

It can be difficult to beat the emotions that automatically overwhelm us after hearing words that seem hurtful. However, you will be empowered when you learn just how to avoid taking things personally. Just grasping the concept of “it’s them, not you” is the first major step to getting to a place where you can free yourself from resentful feelings. Once you set yourself free from this burden you can finally open yourself up to true understanding of compassion for others.

So as you find yourself in situations where your feelings are hurt, remember to stop and think about WHY they are saying those words… you’ll soon discover it’s not all about you. Take on the role of an unbiased outsider who is analyzing your relationship—where is the other person coming from? What needs are being met by saying such seemingly hurtful words? When you take a step back and remove yourself from fault, your life is much less frustrating and much more enjoyable.

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