Have you been around toxic people and you feel life drained from you? I can relate with you on it. People are toxic to be around when they believe everything happening around them is a direct assault on them or is in some way all about them.

That’s the truth. Let it sink in.

Friends, truth is that what people say and do to you is not so much about you but much more about them. People’s reactions to you are a reflection of their perspectives, wounds and experiences. Whether people think you’re amazing, or believe you’re the worst, again, is more about them and how they view their world.

Mind you, I’m not saying you become self-indulged narcissists and ignore all the opinions and commentary we receive from others. I’m simply saying that incredible amounts of hurt, disappointment and sadness in our lives come directly from our tendency to take things personally. In most cases it’s far more productive and healthy to let go of other people’s good or bad opinions of you, and to operate in your own sphere.

Whatever the situation, remember not to give your power away. You may not be able to control their ways but you can control the way you decide to respond to them. When we experience some stressful experiences, how do we respond? Some people immediately jump right into action, often without thinking which most times results in regrets afterwards. Others get angry, or sad. Yet, others start to feel sorry for themselves and begin to play the victim card.

Responses like these are not healthy or helpful. In fact, whenever your response lacks a mindful level of acceptance you’re likely taking things too personally. And you’re not alone. We all make this mistake sometimes. If someone does something we disagree with, we tend to interpret this as a personal attack. Some people even think life itself is personally against them. But the truth is, almost nothing in life is personal – things happen, or they don’t, and it’s rarely all about anyone specifically.

People have emotional issues they’re dealing with, and it makes them defiant, rude, and thoughtless sometimes. They are doing the best they can, or they’re not even aware of their issues. In any case, you can learn not to interpret their behaviors as personal attacks, and instead see them as non-personal encounters that you can either respond to with a peaceful mindset, or not respond to at all.

You may not be able control all the things people say and do to you, but you can decide not to be reduced by them. Yes, there is an incredible amount of freedom that comes to you when you detach from other people’s behaviors. The way people treat you is their problem, how you react is yours. When you think better, you live better!