As I grew older, I realized that I started using this phrase quite often than I realized I would. Back when I was a child, if I ever fell on the ground when I was playing, I was taught to get up, dust myself up and carry on with what I was doing, unless I was bleeding or had a real injury.
When I went to school, our teachers punished us if we didn’t do our homework. Even in university, I remember our professors not accepting students into the class if they were late. Was I offended by this? I would be lying if I said “no!”.
Though I am considered to be a millennial, I was still born in the 90s, which means that people like me had the best of both worlds. In the present time and age, I understand that people have evolved to be more progressive, inclusive and diverse. Needless to say, that is awesome, and I am delighted for these advancements. However, there is still something that needs to be addressed to our generation.
Us Against the World
“It’s us against the world!”
For most of my life, the world has never been fair to me. Though I am happy with my position in life today, I would have lesser worries if every effort I had taken had been successful. I would have more confidence in myself if I had heard fewer discouraging words from my kith and kin.
There are many times when I almost gave up on life, just because I was offended by something someone said. This someone may have not even known me very well, or couldn’t have meant anything to me at all. But it did have some effect on me or my actions.
This is not easy and those were the times that I realized that words could speak louder than actions too. But as I gradually started doing my research, reading more and watching movies based on real life stories, I understood that I should not value every word that came from every single person’s mouth.
Building a Filter
Some 5 to 6 years back, I spent time on social media commenting and debating with people, just because I didn’t like their posts or they didn’t like mine. I thought I was making my point, but when I looked at the amount of time I spent doing that, I realized that I was not achieving anything.
Today, I spend quite a considerable amount of time on social media, but I post my opinions and stay calm. I notice people’s reactions and try to put the data collected to better use, but if someone says something that I would not usually agree with, I try to do my research. If I do my research and still do not value their comments or opinions, I just ignore them.
Over the years, I have decided to filter what I absorb from others and it has greatly helped me. There are times when I still get offended by people who deliberately want to offend me, but I can figure it out when someone didn’t mean to do so. It is simple — getting offended by some else’s opinion is only a waste of your time.
Does That Mean We Should Let Our Guard Down?
If you would ask me, I would say “no!”. Never let your guard down. I have encountered many situations in life where I know that the other person is trying hard to belittle me. In that case, I would most definitely give them a piece of my mind. But after that, I try to forget the incident and move on.
While the term ‘bullying’ is slowly losing its status in the 21st century, it still exists in indirect forms. Right from a corporate office environment to a kindergarten class, you will find that bullying exists if you try to look for it. If we choose to let our guard down, we end up being oppressed. In order to stand up for yourself, you should keep your shield up always.
There is a big difference between being assertive and being offended. I’ve tried to be more assertive in day-to-day situations and it has helped me a lot.
Channelize Your Negative Energy into Positive Energy
If you encounter something that’s offensive to you, it will bring you a lot of negative energy. That is typical human nature and there’s nothing we could do about it. I usually get offended when people underestimate me. That gives me some negative energy that might even temporarily stop me from what I am doing.
But I learned to take a break, channelize that negative energy, and turn it into inspiration to nail what I am doing. I have tried this many times, and it worked every time. This is another reason why I would recommend it to anyone.
This planet is a great place, but the world we live in is designed to be cruel, especially when we pick our battles.
There could be a zillion circumstances that could get us offended, but if we continue to absorb it, we will eventually succumb to it. So, in the best interest of our mental and physical health, and taking our truly loved ones into consideration, it’s about time we stop getting offended. At the end of the day, only you know who you are, and there is no point trying to prove it to someone else who doesn’t even matter to you.