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Monday, January 28, 2019

thought for the week January 28

Last week someone who I thought was a friend acted so rudely that she took my breath away for a minute. I thought to myself "No. Wait. What? Did she really just do this to me?" I was so upset about what she said that I let it simmer inside for several days.  I believed what she said.  I kept running the conversation over in my head. There were other people who heard her say these hurtful comments to me and it took everything I had not to text them and get their insight. To be clear, there was really no other way to interpret what she said to me. It was cold and sharp and meant to hurt. She accomplished what she set out to do. She made me feel small.

I decided against asking my friends what they thought because really what would that have accomplished other than giving more thought to her mean spirited stab? I wondered why I let her get inside my head and more importantly, my soul. The quotation by Eleanor Roosevelt popped into my head. "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." I said this to myself over and over.

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.

I had subconsciously made the decision to let her dictate how I felt about myself. I let her ruin several potentially great days of my life because I felt humiliated by what she said to me in public. In that moment I made the decision that what she thinks of me doesn't matter. Everyone has a different view of me in their minds. If I try to live my life being kind and compassionate (qualities that I try to imbue in my own daughter) then that is what matters. The person who bullies someone else is coming at life with a negative attitude. Sometimes unintentionally they hurt the people around them and sometimes it's intentional. Has anyone ever said something mean to you and followed it up with "I said this for your own good, you know?"  This does not have to be the way that you accept being treated. Even if it's a work, school, family or neighbor situation that you can't walk away from, you don't have to let what someone else thinks about you, affect the way that you see yourself. 

If you treat others with kindness and come at the world from a place of love, that becomes your shield. When I thought about this situation and how I would treat future interactions like this, I imagined a pink bubble around me that was impenetrable and iridescent. You can call this shield love, confidence, a positive attitude or even a guardian angel's grace. The thing is, when you believe in yourself and your worth, the confidence you exude will bounce negative energy away from you. As Martin Luther King Jr. said "Darkness cannot drive our darkness.; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." Be the light. 

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