There are two kinds of people, as I observed: the ones who are lucid and living in reality, the second kind are the ones who can’t bear the pains of reality and live in denial, lying to themselves and others.
The common lies people tell [and believe them, to make life bearable]:
- My parents are great parents [even though I grew up in constant chaos]
- My spouse is wonderful and loving [even though they are abusive]
- I have many great friends [600 FaceBook followers, most I barely know]
- My family is very supportive [even though they’re critical and controlling]
These people live in the sweet ignorance that they are (at least) not alone in the world…
Those who dare (or have no choice) to be lucid, see things what they really are, not accept things at their ‘face value’ are very brave, but they also suffer. They suffer, usually from time to time from the notion that they, in fact, are alone in this world… often without an empathic friendly shoulder to rest their weary head on.
I don’t know which is a better adaptation to life, but as mentioned, sometimes lucidity is not a choice – it feels both like a blessing and a curse. I salute those who refuse to live a lie and sympathize with their suffering. This post is dedicated to you.
We’ve all experienced negative treatment by others: family, friends, lovers, strangers. Be it in the form of rejection, invalidation [your opinion doesn’t matter/ you’re wrong – I’m right], dismissiveness [I’ll act as you don’t exist], the cold shoulder is similar to dismissiveness.
As we know from psychology – all these can have an extremely negative impact on a person’s psyche. These can lead to depressive/anxious feelings and a pervasive sense of loneliness.
However, once you get past the shock [especially with the ones who you thought your closest allies], the situations can be re-framed and actually give you a feeling of empowerment!
There will always be people out there, who do not wish you to succeed, to do well, to prosper, to be happy or to be correct when they are wrong. Why? Ego. These people see you as a threat to their Ego [their very psychological existence is at stake, as they are weak to accept a contrary point of view or to not be able think themselves ‘the best’]. So, they will try to bring you down to make themselves feel better. [Sick, I know.] The motif for their behavior is jealousy.
I’ll give you a couple of personal examples of how to react to ‘haters’ and ‘nay-sayers’.
I like you /I don’t
A person I was close to, a business-owner; I often work on my Lenovo from his establishment. He made romantic advances, and I returned them to a degree. His biz is not doing so well, and I watched him get one bad advice after another from people who know nothing about business. When I offered my thoughts, he dismissed them. What do I know? I’m just a customer-girl. He began acting weird, dismissive, never saying ‘hi’, never responding to my casual friendly communications, ignoring me every chance he could. His actions messaged: “I don’t notice you [you don’t exist], I have more important people in my life [all dysfunctional drama-queens], your ideas – in one ear, out the other [I can’t allow you to be right], you’re doing well – I’m struggling [I want to see you fail before I do]”.
Did that hurt? Yes. The whole point of this psychic battle is to make the strong person feel weak, to invalidate them, to dent their self-confidence, to make them feel rejected and unimportant.
SnowWhite and the 100 Haters
For the past Halloween, there was a restaurant that held a party/contest for the best costume [prize = $1,000]. One lady told me “You’d look like SnowWhite if your lips were redder”. That was the inspiration…. I didn’t like any of the commercially-available costumes, so I made my own.
As the contest commenced, the DJ would elect a winner based on the crowd’s cheers. There was the Ahmed-the-Scull (cheers), Man-in-Portapottie (cheers), Pirate-carrying-a-treasure chest-with-fake-mermaid (cheers). When I came out as SnowWhite – dead silence… I curtsied gracefully, stunned by the crowd’s reaction, but I was not upset.
I didn’t win, of course, but the crowd’s reaction was curious to me. Why such a cold shoulder from complete strangers? I think you can guess the answer from the previous example. So I actually left feeling good. Perhaps my dress was threatening in some way, that the unanimous sentiment was: “Oh, so she thinks her stuff so good? Let’s show her it’s not…” Again, the aim is to bring the person down.
So the next time…
You find yourself in the face of adversity – I dare you to take it as ‘a compliment, disguised as an insult’. It means that you are a worthy adversary (if not more!). As Alexander the Great said: “Victory favors the bold.” When it appears that the entire world is against you – it’s proof-positive that you are a Champion. Let it empower you with Confidence, to be who you are and achieve great things.
As always, yours truly,