A long time ago I was hanging out with a guy I was barely getting to know. We were eating a bunch of snacks I bought the same day, while we were sitting in my living room watching a movie. As I leaned towards the table and reached for another handful of candy, he tugged at the skin on my belly and said with humor in his voice, “are you sure you want to eat more of that?“.
I spent the next couple of weeks analyzing my body from head to toe, and I kept noticing all these new flaws that I never paid attention to before. It was the first thing on my mind when I woke up and the last thing on my mind before I went to sleep. I completely stopped eating in front of people. I was so distraught by that comment that I could barely look at myself in the mirror without tearing up. I was a mess.
When I look back I realize that those words would have no impact on me if I hadn’t been already been insecure about my body. Instead of accepting that this was my insecurity, I put all the blame on him. (Important! I’m not saying what he said was okay, because it was kinda lame and unnecessary regardless, but I’m using this as an example to get to a bigger point). If the same thing happened now I probably would have laughed, called him an idiot and said something along the lines of “yeah, I actually am gonna eat more candy, and after I finish this I might even eat some more”, and we would be done with that. No crying. No fighting. No drama.
I like my body as it is, so why should I let anybody else affect that? The choice is up to me and I choose to form my own opinions regarding how I am and how I look, I don’t want to depend on other people to make those decisions for me. If somebody makes a rude comment about you, and you react strongly, it’s probably because you’re already insecure about that thing.
When you let your insecurities take control, you’ll always be on guard and notice anything that can trigger these feelings of insecurity. You’re always looking for critique. I promise if you want to, you can find hate anywhere.
If your significant other acts distant for ten minutes, you’ll feel like they lost interest and don’t find you attractive anymore. You’ll think that people at work are angry because you’re annoying and bothersome, and that they wished you didn’t work there. You’ll feel like your friend hates you because they didn’t smile at you that exact day when they met you. Who wants to go around feeling like that?
When you think about it, it’s actually weird that people react so strongly to a few negative comments. Constructive criticism is one thing, but random shit-talking is something that should be completely unimportant to everyone. Why should it affect you?
My point is: build a strong foundation of faith in yourself that you can always fall back on. When you have that, nobody can affect your opinions on yourself. We’re all on a journey. Every one of us. Nobody is fully developed or shaped as a human being yet. If you can accept that and be kind towards yourself, your quality of life is going to get drastically better. If you face the world expecting rejection, you’ll find rejection in everything and everyone.