“Just because someone says something doesn’t make it so. Take the time to check it out; rather than reactively acting out.” ~LMB
People say all sorts of things for all kinds of reasons. Some things are true, some things aren’t, and others are somewhere in between. Your job is to take the time to figure out what’s true for you. One person may say that the world is coming to an end, while another says the world will go on to infinity. Your spouse may say you’re controlling while your mother says you don’t have a controlling bone in your body. Who do you believe? How do you tell what’s true and what’s not?
Regardless of who is saying what, your responsibility is to stay calm while you process and assess the information. If the comments are personal, don’t be wounded by every negative remark made about you. Slow down and ask yourself if there is truth to what is said. Often, the most challenging comments to take in are the ones you need to hear the most. Your job is to humbly look at the feedback others give you about yourself and own what’s true. It’s not being mean to tell someone they’re too critical, reactive, controlling, or (fill in the blank)—especially if they are. If you’re not sure if what was said is true, then ask others, whom you trust, what they think. Realize that if two or more different sources say the same thing, then it’s true. Next, take in that feedback, remind yourself that all human beings are imperfect, and work to change that issue.
Filtering information about things outside of you is done much the same way. Regardless of whether that information is your mentor telling you all jobs in your field will be obsolete, your church leader saying the world is ending, or a politician saying there is no racism, don’t blindly react. Get curious, not righteous, or reactive. Take the time to make an informed decision. Hear the message, check the source, gather more information from different sources, tune into your wisest self, and then determine if you believe that message to be true or not. People say things for all sorts of reasons—some of which are noble, rational, and honest, and others are fear-driven, manipulative, or characterologically maligned. Do your homework. Don’t ever assume a statement is true because a person or group spoke it. No matter what you decide, be careful not to over-react. Stay steady and think before you respond.
- Slow down your reactions to messages about you, issues, or the world.
- Take the time to filter those messages rather than impulsively reacting to them.
- Regardless of the source of information, don’t instantly believe or automatically defend against anything without adequately assessing its content.
Encourages others to do the same.