What not taking things personally means to me + Marie Forleo

Most of my past sales jobs I have taken things personally…

I have taken the things customers, prospects and people I’ve worked with…personally…

I remember letting so much negativity seep into my pores and then re-playing the negative experiences over and over again… equating it all with “there must be something wrong with me”…

“There is definitely something wrong with them…but there is something very wrong with me…”

I knew that everyone was different and when you interact with so many different people on most days, you are bound to have the numbers not in your favor of positive people… a lot of people have bad days… a lot of the time… grouchy, mean, rude, inconsiderate…. it made me appreciate the few people I actually had nice conversations with…. it made me appreciate the people who were sincere to me…

Looking back, I would take a different approach, but I believe the change begins with us… and it’s important to remember that most times, the way other people act is about them, and not about us… the way we respond is definitely about us and if we are noticing a lot of negativity around us, we can then look within ourselves and see what’s going on… with love and positivity, not negativity and guilt.

Marie Forleo addresses: Not taking things personally

Hugely beneficial when relating with adults, but I will touch on an area where not taking things personally has really helped me….

My daughter

They say 6-year-olds test the limits now more than ever, talking back like a teenager rather than how we think a 1st grader would act.

I’ve always taken pride in the fact that I talk with Charlie about things. I’m not afraid to have conversations with her that explain the situation, how we are all affected and the impact her words and behaviors have on herself and others. I have gone into great detail, sometimes talking and talking, drifting into “way back when” and Charlie’s personal favorite, “back in the day”…

I have taken great strides to put things into perspective for her, desperately (and I’d love to think intellectually) explaining to her the complexities and various facets of life that could possibly apply to this situation….

My intention has been to bring her out of her self-centered world and reveal to her just how big things are: I’ve referenced children in Africa, maps, countries, the law, government, the education system, big business, healthcare… the list continues and I can chuckle to myself now but I’ve had some really great lectures with my only audience member staring at me with her big, brown eyes, her little brother in the background, laying on his pillow, listening to my billowing stories…

Sometimes this has worked…and she releases her anger and her temper subsides.

Most of the time, however, her and I end up arguing and it’s more about my attitude towards her then the fact that she talked back to me about whatever it was…

I decided to take her dad’s advice, once and for all, and be ok with less talking

….and not taking her behavior personally….

I’d tell her dad, “All the things I do for her, I can’t believe she talks to me that way….she knows when too much is too much and yet she still continues to push me… she drives me crazy!”

He reminded me that she is not trying to hurt me….she really isn’t….she’s just always going to push the limits and since I can expect that, I must keep it short and sweet. If she talks back to me, she doesn’t get to do something she has planned, and/or she doesn’t get to watch tv….

I am reminded of a lesson in business and relationships I learned early on…

People don’t always remember what you say, but they remember how you made them feel…

Finally deciding to commit to the practice of saying less and thinking more about how I am making Charlie feel with my words and tone, I am thrilled to say that things have been working out.

I’m not stressed or worried about our relationship and her development and whether she’s going to say something that is disappointing or hurtful. I can stay on an even keel with my tone and be kind, pretty much assuming that she’s going to have a few meltdowns every day and that I can simply be ok with her not getting to do something she wanted to do. I have to be ok with her behavior and know that getting angry only detracts from her own behavior and put the attention on me….

So, although Marie Forleo wasn’t completely addressing my relationship with my 6-year-old, it’s a great topic that we can apply to many areas of our lives.

Enjoy it here!

2 thoughts on “What not taking things personally means to me + Marie Forleo

  1. Yay!!! Nik…so poud of you for sticking to your new ways! Sean is right….less is more now and how she will feel from your actions WILL work. It stinks at the moment but long term it will work. Your a great mom and charlie will see that later and you can be friends then. Sneak in your long winded “jpw sr” like convos every once and a while but let her be a kid. I know from experience. Lol start on Theo too cus you'll need it when baby #3 enters. Love u

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