How often do you take what others say personally?
In his book, The Four Agreements, Don Miguel Ruiz says, Don’t Take Anything Personally. Several years ago, I adopted this as a mantra. It was a powerful experience. As I lived with this statement as a possibility, I became aware of several patterns:
- I didn’t have a very high opinion of myself. I expected criticism, so I would hear criticism where there wasn’t any. It was simply my projection because I expected it.
- I realized that the people who criticized me, that they were people who criticized everything. I just happened to be in their line of fire. But they also criticized themselves.
- I criticized myself . . . a lot. With this increase awareness of my own self criticism, I was able to begin to change the pattern. To begin to talk kindly to myself.
- I was very critical, not only of my self, but of others. With this awareness, I could begin to think and speak more kindly to others.
Results of Practice
With this practice over the years, I began to change. I became more compassionate, understanding, kind and forgiving of myself and others.