Feel Joy

“Oh honey. I’m not your problem. You’re your problem.”

I wrote that yesterday. Not for anyone in particular, just as a reminder to myself. Because, here’s the thing: Some people in life will simply not like me. And that’s okay. It’s okay if they don’t like you, too. Because, if you’ve been a good person, and you’ve done nothing to hurt that person, then it’s their problem, not yours. The hurt feeling that comes along with their rejection is just your bruised ego, which can be a little painful, but not the end of the world. 

There can be multiple reasons why someone feels negativity towards you. Everyone likes to blame jealousy. Some sort of jealousy can often be the cause, but not all of the time. And honestly, it’s a little egotistical to just assume someone doesn’t like you because they’re jealous. Sometimes personalities just do not click. Every person has lived a different life made up of millions of different moments that have shaped them into the person they are now. Your kindness may not be received how you intended because of that person’s past. In the end, the reasons behind their rejection don’t matter. It doesn’t take away from the fact that you were being genuine. A good example is when a man brings flowers to a woman for no reason, and the woman’s initial response is “What did you do?” He brought her flowers. That’s what he did. But, if she has only received flowers as a way to cover up mistakes, she’s going to be suspicious. If he continues to bring her flowers for no reason, eventually her reaction will change from skepticism to happiness. 

So, here’s my advice for navigating the multiple, past-shaped personalities you’ll meet along the way:

Love. With no expectation of receiving anything in return. Get a feeling of joy simply by loving. Don’t base your feelings on how someone responds to your kindness. Let your heart swell with happiness in the moment YOU control.

Give a compliment. Feel joy. 

Give a gift. Feel joy. 

Give a hand. Feel joy. 

How the receiving party reacts to you doesn’t matter. That’s on them. You did your small part to make this world a little better in that moment. Walk away feeling joy.

There will be many, many times along the way when you’ll feel the sting of rejection. It will hurt. But, if you remember that you’ve done everything you can to be a good person, if you remember that their response is out of your hands, if you remember “I’m not your problem. You’re your problem.” it will hurt just a little less. 
💋💋 Jennifer

-Cheryl Strayed, ‘Brave Enough’

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