How to Overcome Personal Character Attacks
There are people in this world who are just plain nasty. It is as simple as that. Nothing more and nothing less. Sure, we don’t like to think that nasty people exist so we are quick to label and justify their actions. It was their past, their childhood, their upbringing or whatever reason. It makes us feel better knowing that there is an excuse for unreasonable and uncalled for actions.
Until of course, those unwanted actions are aimed toward us personally. That can be a different ball game. Why? Because emotions and ego’s are involved. Two things that can cause a sure fire reaction in the form of some kind of revenge or retribution.
Now, without the want of sounding self-righteous, I consider myself a pretty decent kind of guy. I don’t gossip about others or constantly pull others down or attack the integrity of those around me. Why should I? What gains could I possibly get from such actions? Well, in one word: None.
But there are people like that who exist. They set out to needlessly put out other people’s fires. Why do they do this? Well, that’s another blog but be rest assured it is usually a case of inadequacy, low self-esteem, hidden agendas or generally to divert attention away from themselves.
But anyway, here is how I deal with such situations. I hope it can help you do likewise if you have suffered the ignominy of such behaviour or find yourself under personal attack.
Be philosophical. Easier said than done I know. Here is a short fable I read somewhere that went something like this.
Oh those wise men….
A really happy wise man returns home one evening after work, a little later than usual and surprisingly enough, extra happy. His wife greets him and to her astonishment, his face is covered with cuts and bruises.
“What on earth happened to you?” She cries. The wise man replies that he was mugged of his possessions on the way home.
“Oh my! And why are you extra happy if you have been robbed of your things?” she asks, rather puzzled.
The old wise man tells her he is extra joyful for 3 very good reasons.
The first he says is because they only caused cuts and bruises which will soon heal. “I didn’t die” said the wise old man.
The second reason he explains is because they only took his watch and money. “Both of these material things can be easily replaced” he gleefully exclaims.
“And what’s the 3rd reason?” She asks, proud of the wisdom already coming from her old husband.
The third reason he is extra happy is the most important of all the old man joyfully tells his wife. “I realised on the way home that I am not like them. My character, thank goodness, is not their character.”
Putting out someone elses fire does not make yours burn any warmer, any longer and it certainly won’t cause it to burn any brighter.
And that’s how I deal with such people or circumstances. I take solace in knowing in my heart of hearts that I would not say such wicked things about another; especially when there is absolutely no reason to.
And after removing myself from their working or social circle and ensuring they no longer gatecrash my personal space or energy orbit, I say a final ‘Bless you’. Not in a condescending manner or with a ‘holier than thou’ attitude. Just a genuine ‘Bless you’. If you also think philosophically about it, they are the ones that need that ‘bless you’ more than most. It must be awful to be in such inner turmoil.
Isn’t that far better than wasting precious thinking time and energy on such individuals? I think so. Any other way such as hurtful or revengeful thoughts you may wish to hold about them are only giving them power of you and your thinking. I choose not to give such power over my thoughts to anyone.
Sure they may achieve some short term personal gain, but so what? Does it matter to you? Successful people don’t get involved in such trivia. They rise above. And you may also take comfort in the fact the stronger person, the more self-assured within, resists the emotional temptation to stoop to their level.
And of course, like the old wise man, I bless them for happily reminding me, that on the whole, I am a good person.