We know how the saying goes. Opinions are like assholes, everybody’s got one. But that doesn’t mean it’s important or worthy for us to take into our realm of truth.
People are going to think whatever they want about us. They are going to make snap judgements about how we talk, dress, and behave. They are going to react to us that show us what they think of us. They see us through their own filter. But it’s not truth.
When you are single, you are shedding a layer of skin, a personality. When we as human beings are in a relationship, it is natural to chip away a little piece of ourselves to make room for the other person to fit. Over time, more and more can get chipped away to make space for the “we.” And then, suddenly, the relationship is over. And we shed the “we” and then we realize that there is a chunk missing and we don’t know what’s wrong or where it went. It went away with him, and you want that part of you back. Many people think that means they want the guy and the relationship back. That will make them whole again. And sometimes it feels good again, for a little while.
But that’s not the issue. The issue is that there is a part of you that is defined by “we” and not by me. When the relationship changes and you’re single, you have an opportunity. You get to decide how to define yourself.
The people around us, our friends, family, romantic relationships, coworkers and boss all have an opinion about who they think we are. Sometimes they share their opinion with us. We need to look at this feedback as an opportunity.
Danielle LaPorte wrote The Fire Starter sessions and in one section it encourages you to seek the opinion of a dear friend that will be completely honest with you. I was afraid to ask for someone else’s opinion of me. I think we all are, we’re afraid that they will have harsh things to say about us that they’ve been holding in and just waiting for an opportunity to let us have it.
I learned the exercise is actually twofold. The first is getting the feedback from someone you love and trust. The second is realizing that our friends really do love us and will never tell us what we can’t handle. The feedback I got was that I am too hard on myself! All that anxiety that there are awful things I’m doing and I am told that I am too rough on myself.
But getting that feedback from my friend gave me the opportunity to hear something from someone I cared about and then I could decide what I believe out of what was said. Because I’m the one that has to deal with it, not her. She said her piece and that was that. There wasn’t anything for her to deal with, it’s on my plate.
You can hear feedback. You can be told anything, but you can decide what you want to take in and take as truth. I was told this week that I was too smart and that I didn’t know enough, all in one conversation. I don’t agree with either. He can say that to my face, but it doesn’t have to come inside. I don’t have to accept it. It’s an opinion from an asshole, actually!
When you are single, you can decide who you are. Who do you want to be? How do you want to show up in this world? No one else gets the power to define who you are. And don’t give that power to someone else that has an opinion. Just because they have an opinion doesn’t mean they have any power over you.
No one can take your power unless you give it to them. So don’t give it to them. Keep your power. Make yourself who you want to be. Who cares what anyone else thinks? There’s a saying that goes “What you think of me isn’t any of my business.” I agree.