Why don’t you see me the way I see myself?

It is over

We have all been on the receiving end of a conversation that has included: “don’t take this the wrong way…” Staying open minded to what follows that particular statement is a tough one that we’ve all struggled with at some point {At least I hope it’s not just me}.

Although I have made it my mission to seek out feedback about the {my} world’s perception of me, hearing how people view me is sometimes the best and the worst news delivered all at once. I am always grateful to hear the constructive criticism about the things I can work on developing. I’m especially fond of those amazing souls who have perfected the art of delivering that news sensitively but directly. If you have ever had the pleasure of being slapped and stroked at the same time by someone like this, kiss the ground they walk on – they will help elevate you to the peaks of personal and professional success.

Here are some links to a few great blog posts about great ways to effectively deliver constructive criticism: 
http://blog.teefury.com/the-fine-art-of-constructive-criticism/

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/10/01/how-to-respond-effectively-to-design-criticism/

http://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/enemies-of-the-art-part-10-having-a-thin-skin/

Meanwhile, on the other end of the spectrum: There are those “special” people out there that just completely squelch any positive spin on the feedback they give and charge full steam ahead by stomping all over your ego and parading around your shortcomings to put you on full blast {Insert the “shame on you” wagging finger}. This breed of individual really flips my switch. If there was ever a scenario that makes it hard for me to remember not to wear my emotions on my sleeve; it is definitely this one. I know I may bother you or you may not like something about me, but when did this method ever breed positive results for you? Any examples? Probably not…

My inner psychologist wants to sit them down and talk through the fact that this is clearly some sort of insecurity on their part, some lack of confidence and need to feel authoritative at all costs. Really try to help them figure out their own issues. The other part of me wants to slowly slink under the table and cry {Repeat to self: “don’t be the victim, do NOT be the victim”}.

How does one properly deal with feeling isolated, flat out offended, or even hurt by other people’s views of who you are? My short answer: Don’t take it personally. Of course that’s what my short answer is…. So easy, right? NOT! I really don’t feel like there is any other one-size fits all solution other than – don’t take it personally. 

Back-story: I’m the oldest of (6) six kids. I have an insatiable need to over achieve at everything that I do, yearning to be the nurturer, the center of attention, always the epitome of success. This of course comes with it’s pitfalls, certain things tend to be stumbling blocks for me, such as; My need to always be right {insert your joke here}, I’m stubborn (or so I hear), also, ironically – it’s not hard for me to admit to failure which can confuse people about me. Truth is, my journey to paint the perfect portrait of who I am leaves me exhausted and feeling like a failure more often than not.

I want people to like me. I am a people pleaser. I have painted a less than perfect picture of myself, but I still want people to marvel at it every once in a while.

Does every artist paint their masterpiece, seemingly satisfied while standing at the canvas fearing only to step back, see the big picture and realize they have SO much more work to do? Do you ever really feel satisfied with the “big picture” of who you are? I know I don’t.

There are (3) three things I think I’m trying to get at here:

1). Have confidence in who you are. You are special – seriously. The world is moved, shook to the core by the people who march to the beat of their own drum. Driving innovation & creativity that they didn’t know existed in people.

2). Stop worrying about what other people WANT you to be. Listen intensely to how your peers see you, how your leadership perceives you {yes, even listen to those special people who need to work on their delivery methods…} Don’t ever forget to put your ear to the ground and use their feedback to challenge yourself to always be better. Just don’t lose sight of the fact that you can continue your metamorphosis into who you want to be without letting other ideas of who you should be drive that change.

3). Never stop reinventing yourself*. Who you were yesterday is not who you are today and who you are today is not who you will be tomorrow. *Disclaimer: Please don’t misinterpret this and go from sleek professional to punk rock chic who shows up to work with blue hair (unless that’s who you really feel like you are)  Keep certain things about your identify sacred & don’t let go of your sense of self and inner identity. EVER. Strive to continue to shed your old skin and become a better you. Use the way people view you to help reinvent a better you, don’t allow it to knock you down and find yourself stuck in stagnant waters.

Don’t take it personal people. Welcome the criticism, but don’t tolerate the hate. know that positivity breeds results. Passion will move you beyond yourself and your shortcomings. In today’s world, you only have to turn around once with your eyes closed to be lost.

“Your perceptions are derived from your feelings and your ability to be yourself, to own and trust yourself, and to say what you feel, even when it may be diametrically opposed to everyone eles’s opinion. You may be called the Devil Incarnate. You may feel like cow pies are being thrown at you. Sometimes that is part of being true to yourself.” ― Barbara Marciniak, Family of Light: Pleiadian Tales and Lessons in Living

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