I love when people stand up for themselves.
People can be cruel. And unkind. And flat out wrong. These often are the people whose opinions matter most to us.
Not true, you say? Then why do you hold onto them, nurture them, and give that person such power over your self esteem for such a long period of time?
Often when these folks speak, we retreat. Or we weakly fight back, not even believing what we say ourselves. Or we tell others, hoping they will come to our aid and rescue us. They often will, but that often makes us dependent and does not build our power.
In each of these instances, you’re not standing up for yourself. You’re not trusting your own ability to look at yourself logically and evaluate yourself based on the person you know yourself to be and the person you want to be. You’re not evaluating your personal priorities and seeing if you measure up to them.
You make your priorities. They typically don’t match the priorities others have for you. That’s OK. These others need to spend more time reviewing their own lives and less time criticizing yours. They get to set their own priorities. Not yours.
Sometimes criticism comes from a kind and loving place. It’s a gift. You don’t have to accept the gift, though, simply because it comes from a good place. Consider it, though. Their view of what is right for you may not be your own currently, but it also may be a great idea to make your life better. But it’s your choice. You never have to change your life to their recommendation if you don’t agree with it, just because you like and respect them.
When we stick up for ourselves, we don’t have to meet anger for anger or unkindness with unkindness. We merely have to state our position. If we care to share it with them. Sometimes they don’t deserve even that. They want a reaction. They want to hurt you. Turn around and walk away. Why keep yourself in that position? Why let them feel satisfaction for the pain they’ve caused?
I love people who stand up for themselves because it shows the personal power they have developed that claims their life as their own.
“You have to develop ways so that you can take up for yourself, and then you take up for someone else. And so sooner or later, you have enough courage to really stand up for the human race and say, ‘I’m a representative.'” – Maya Angelou