This is one of agreements from The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz. He argues that anything anyone says about you is really about themselves. You’re just a mirror for them.
I don’t take it personally when people say, “Miguel, you are the best,” and I also don’t take it personally when they say, “Miguel, you are the worst.” I know that when you are happy you will tell me, “Miguel, you are such an angel!” But, when you are mad at me you will say, “Oh, Miguel, you are such a devil! You are so disgusting. How can you say those things?” Either way, it does not affect me because I know what I am. I don’t have the need to be accepted.
Did you catch that? Even if someone is telling you you’re great, you’re not allowed to take that personally.
That’s a tough one for me. I care a lot what people think about me, and compliments feel great. Now this guy is telling me I’m not allowed to care about that stuff. I have to actively avoid feeling good from a compliment, because I should already feel good about myself all the time.
If they tell you how wonderful you are, they are not saying that because of you. You know you are wonderful. It is not necessary to believe other people who tell you that you are wonderful. Don’t take anything personally.
And if you thought THAT was tough, check this out:
Even the opinions you have about yourself are not necessarily true; therefore, you don’t need to take whatever you hear in your own mind personally.
When he says “don’t take anything personally” he really means ANYTHING. What a mind bender. I’m going to need to let this percolate for a few days (or decades).
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