I came across this quote from Brené Brown on a LinkedIn post and it really resonated with me.
I see so many women commenting about how they are taking steps to improve their health or lose weight, and family members or friends or even random strangers make hurtful comments that threaten to derail us from our plans and goals.
What’s worse, we sometimes even internalize these comments and start to believe them. We “pull them close” and dwell on them, try to imagine what we should say or do, or dissolve into tears because we’ve been hurt down to our souls, especially if the comments come from someone we love.
Nothing could be more damaging to our self-esteem than to believe the hurtful comments from other people who don’t understand the journey we are on.
There are some strategies that we can use to handle hurtful comments when they come (and they will come!)
First of all, remember that you are a person of value and worth, no matter where you are in your journey. No one’s words can take away or diminish your worth. You are worthy because you are alive, you exist, and you are important. Believe in yourself!
Secondly, if the person who made the comment is a random stranger, then they don’t deserve the mindspace in your head. They don’t know you, they don’t know your journey, they don’t know anything about you. Never let a derogatory comment from a random stranger take you off track. If it helps, just laugh out loud and realize that if they have to make bad comments to other people to make themselves feel better, they are in a much worse place than you are. They only deserve your pity.
And if the person making the hurtful comments is someone you love, Consider whether they made the comment out of ignorance or out of a desire to be hurtful. If the comment was made out of ignorance, confront the comment directly and honestly, but don’t put more emphasis on it than it deserves. “I’m a little hurt that you would say that because I value your opinion, but this is my journey and I’m working hard to reach my goals. I appreciate any constructive comments you might have.” If the person made the comments out of a desire to be hurtful, then evaluate your relationship with that person and how much time you want to spend with him or her.
Try to hang out with people who will build you up and cheer you on in reaching your goals and be a positive influence in your life, who will challenge you to keep going, even when the naysayers try to rain on your party.