Tag Archives: Attitude

How to Respond to Insults and Put-Downs

As human beings, we all want to be liked by the people who really matter to us and know that our efforts are appreciated. So, when someone puts us down, excludes us or reacts negatively to what we do, it taps into our individual insecurities and can really sting.

Here are some of my strategies for dealing with insults:

1. Don’t look upset

I don’t care if you’re about to crumble into a little heap like an old-style vampire who has been out in the sun – never let them see you sweat. That’s exactly what they want. If you don’t look hurt, then their insults haven’t worked. Just smile and look as though they said “good morning” to you. Don’t act weak – they’ll treat you like prey and continue to abuse you.

2. Don’t retaliate

Confront the situation with humor. Instead of getting in their face, making threats or saying something you’ll regret, just say, “Gosh, thank you so much. I’m really going to think about that because it might be very helpful to my life.” It’s called sarcasm, but if you sell it well, it seems sincere.

3. Listen

Even though they’re being an ass, they may actually have some useful information you can use to improve yourself.

4. Respond to the intent behind the insult, not the insult itself

Say something like, “Wow, what happened between us that made you want to hurt me?” That way, you’re highlighting their intent to hurt you rather than addressing the insult. (It also doesn’t hurt to have other people around when you say this because it will really make the insulter look and feel uncomfortable).

5. If you find out someone is talking about you behind your back…

Approach the person and say, “I just wanted to tell you that I’m worried about you because I think you are trusting the wrong people.  I’ve heard that you’ve been saying unpleasant things about me. I’m not upset about that – you’re entitled to your opinion – I just wanted you to know that they are not protecting your privacy.”  Be sure to use the word “they”; that way, you don’t reveal who told you, and you make the gossiper feel paranoid about who he or she can trust. By making it seem like you’re showing them great compassion, you’re covertly addressing their insult and making them think twice before saying bad things about you or anyone else.

6. Walk away

The unfortunate truth is that some people won’t give up. You should simply avoid them and keep them out of your life.

How to Cure the Navel-Gazing Epidemic

Narcissism is one of the biggest dangers today, especially with kids.  Parents are doing everything they can to rescue their kids from their own laziness and failures.  They hand out trophies when they lose and tell them they’re wonderful no matter what.  However, the only thing they’re doing is fostering empty self-esteem.
Many people don’t realize there’s a big difference between wanting something and deserving it.  They think, “I deserve something because I want it,” as opposed to, “I deserve something because I earned it.”  And when it comes to self-esteem, their attitude is no different.
A lot of callers come on my show saying that the reason they make bad choices is because they have low self-esteem.  However, they have it backwards: it’s because they make poor choices that they lack esteem for themselves.  Self-respect requires effort.
About six months ago, a Pakistani girl named Malala Yousafzai was shot multiple times by a Taliban gunman on the way home from school because she stood up for women’s education.  She was taken to Britain and a brilliant team of surgeons saved her life.  Her face looks a bit numb and she has a hard time talking, but she can use her arms and walk.  This girl is a hero and inspiration to us all.  Why?  Because she earned it.  She bravely took a public stand in a region where it’s very dangerous to do so.

Self-respect doesn’t just happen by virtue of being born or because you’re breathing – you have to earn it by what you do.  I can’t believe that people actually expect themselves and their children to feel respect for themselves when they haven’t earned it.
So, how can we adjust this narcissistic attitude?

It all starts with the parents.  First off, I think every parent who allows their child to have their own personal, private Facebook or Twitter account is being negligent.  It gives kids a false sense of who they are in the world, and they have only one way to go from there – down and out.  According to a brilliant essay by Dr. Keith Ablow, Facebook introduces kids to a world of fantasy which artificially makes them feel special, mature, powerful, and important.  But ultimately the bubble bursts and the fake autobiography explodes.  They end up depressed and either kill themselves or someone else.

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/01/08/are-raising-generation-deluded-narcissists/?test=latestnews&intcmp=features#ixzz2HV6CQ8Tm

The rule also applies to television and cell phones.  Your kids should barely watch TV and only if you pick out the programs.  They shouldn’t have a cell phone, but if they do, it should be an old-style phone that only allows them to make calls (not text!) in case of an emergency.
In addition, parents need to cease being weenies and start being leaders in their homes.  Women have to stop dumping their kids in institutionalized day care so they can go off and “esteem themselves” by working.  Furthermore, there are too many unhappy and lonely children as a result of divorced parents who are either too bored or too invested in some new guy or gal to be giving and loving.  Not only does it destroy children’s homes, but it also opens the door for pedophiles who prey on neglected, lonely kids with inattentive parents.
Let’s make fewer excuses (e.g. “We’re too busy and tired,” “All the other kids are doing it,” “You can’t control it,” etc.), and parent more.