The Professional Ignorer
As a coach and self+body image specialist, I see how damaging other’s criticisms can be.They cause a deep emotional upset that can affect a person for years. Unfortunately, critics seem to be hiding in every little crack and crevice of the world. Really, there is no escape of people who will criticize you, and there is definitely no escaping your inner critic.
I read an interesting statistic that: 25% of people who meet you will not like you; 25% will not like you but could be persuaded to; 25% will like you but could be persuaded to not like you, and 25% will like you and stand by you no matter what. You will never have 100% of people liking you! Ouch! This may be a harsh reality check, yet a necessary one. This gives a whole new meaning to the statement: “You can’t please everyone, you have to please yourself.”
If you are a people pleaser, ignoring your critics can be tough. Yet to live the life you desire, you need to become a professional ignorer. You need to rise above what others think of you and believe in yourself, more than you believe in the statements and thoughts of others. Quit wasting your time arguing with people about who you are. There are people in life that are constantly armed for an argument. No matter what you say they will be ready with a comeback. Do you know people like that? They seem to eat and breathe to fight. Sure, you could take your precious time and energy trying to win them over. You could spend hours, days even years of your life trying to “convince” someone that they are wrong about you. To me that is time wasted. If I might make a suggestion, make this vow. “I will no longer try to convince people to like me, believe in me, or stand by me. I have made a choice to focus on the 25% who like me no matter what they like me for who I am. Those are the people I desire in my life.” For myself, since I made that decision, I have better friendships, business relationships, and even the clients that I can serve the most have come into my life. I have given myself permission to ignore those who will never like me, support me or understand me.
What would your life be like if you became a professional ignorer?
- Would you be working at your current job?
- Would you maintain the same friendships?
- Would you feel better about yourself?
- Would you be more honest in your relationships?
I think the list of positive changes would be at least a mile long. You would rise higher than you ever thought possible. I know that is what happened for me. I highly recommend the business of ignoring critics.
Here is another thought about your critics they are really talking about themselves when they criticize you. They are looking at you like a mirror seeing things in themselves that they are judging or rejecting, it is not about you, it is about them. Imagine you holding a mirror for them to see all the things they don’t like about themselves. In Gestalt, this is called projection. It is seeing in someone else that in which we can not see in ourselves. A good reminder is that it has nothing to do with you, so walk away. Instead spend you precious energy developing good relationships with the people who matter to you, and whom you matter to.
Learning to let go…
When it comes to your inner critic unfortunately you can not walk away from it. This critic can be the most damaging of all. We all have one, that little inner voice that says you can’t do that, you aren’t worthy, you aren’t good enough, and you have no value. Remember the professional ignorer? You have to ignore that inner voice too. Some people may say to argue with this voice, make it the enemy. This is a part of you and that voice is there for a reason. There is some value in this voice when it shares wisdom of learning from mistakes and not staying stuck in mistakes or patterns. Yet when this voice is keeping you down and is causing inner turmoil, you need to let those thoughts go. Think of those thoughts passing by on a conveyer belt in your mind, grab only the thoughts that serve you, let the other pass by. Much like the people who come into your life judging and ridiculing you, don’t argue, just let them pass you by. I am not advising you to agree with them or become a door mat. What I am suggesting is chose your battles-become a peaceful warrior. Let those thoughts, feelings, and things said pass by like the wind through trees. Nature give us so many reminders of how to be. A tree is still rooted and is a tree even when the wind blows through it. This is a reminder from nature to be who you are in spite of your critics, and in-spite of your inner voice. Only then will you have truly won the battle.