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How to Stop Taking Everything Personally
Episode 3842nd May 2022 • Everyday Disciple Podcast • Caesar Kalinowski
00:00:00 00:25:08

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When you feel like someone has disrespected you, it's easy to take their behavior personally, blame yourself, and think it reflects on your value. This can be incredibly emotionally draining, but the Gospel offers a way out of these hurtful feelings.  In this episode of the Everyday Disciple Podcast, Caesar talks about why we often take things so personally, allowing them to damage our self-esteem. He'll give you three ways to stop these painful feelings and grow healthier relationships. In This Episode You’ll Learn:
  • Two ways we can take things personally.
  • Common examples that you will relate to immediately.
  • Why no one can actually offend you–you do that!
  • How the Gospel speaks good news to these situations.
Get started here… From this episode: "Here’s the thing about taking things personally… or when we say, or think, “I was offended”… No one can really offend you, but you can TAKE offense. We can choose to take what someone has said about us, or done, and CHOOSE to be offended, or take it personally. That’s not really about them in that moment, it’s about me, my choice… what I am believing to be true."
Each week the Big 3 will give you immediate action steps to get you started.
Download today’s BIG 3 right now. Read and think over them again later. You might even want to share them with others…

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Join us on Facebook and take part in the discussion! If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of this page or right below. Also, please subscribe and leave an honest review for The Everyday Disciple Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen. Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them. Links and Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Free Download of the Big 3 For Episode #384 Coaching with Caesar and Tina in discipleship and missional living. Missio Publishing Get Caesar’s latest book: Bigger Gospel for FREE… Click Here Join us on Facebook

Transcripts

Caesar:

Many, many articles that I read say, stop being so concerned about what others think of you, but how do we do that?

Caesar:

I think the gospel starts to show us the way out of this.

Caesar:

We need to reorder the importance of who thinks and says, what about us.

Caesar:

And see God is glorious.

Caesar:

He's the most glorious one in the universe.

Caesar:

And his opinion is what matters most by a long shot.

Caesar:

And he loves you.

Caesar:

He loves you perfectly.

Caesar:

Additionally, when we choose to take offense or take something personally, we're given that person more power than God, we're making their opinion of us more glorious, and we're putting ourselves in the position of God.

Caesar:

In a way, because we're choosing to let, what we think about that other person's opinion be larger and more important in our life than God himself.

Caesar:

We replace God's opinion and his weightiness or his glory in our life with what the other person's thinking.

Caesar:

They're more glorious.

Caesar:

We choose to take control and take offense.

Caesar:

And then we start to build our case against.

Caesar:

Or against ourselves,

Announcer:

welcome to the Everyday Disciple podcast where you'll learn how to live with greater intentionality and an integrated faith that naturally fits into every area of life.

Announcer:

In other words, discipleship as a lifestyle, this is the stuff your parents, pastors, and seminary professors probably forgot to tell you.

Announcer:

And now here's your host Caesar.

Announcer:

Kalinowski

Caesar:

Okie dokie.

Caesar:

Back together.

Caesar:

So glad to be back with you.

Caesar:

I'm starting to feel better if you listened to the show last week, I shared with you that Tina had finally caught the COVID and maybe we were the last people in the world to do that, but we're feeling better.

Caesar:

Still a lot of brain fog connected with this.

Caesar:

It's kind of amazing.

Caesar:

I physically started feeling pretty good pretty quickly, but the brain fog thing, I felt like I'm kind of looking through a mayonnaise jar and that's how I'm seeing life, but that's getting better and better every day.

Caesar:

I still sound a little froggy.

Caesar:

You probably hear that right now, but I am really excited to be here with you and get to talk about the things we're going to talk about today.

Caesar:

Before we get started.

Caesar:

I want to thank our sponsor Missio publishing.

Caesar:

They continue to put out, I think just some of the very best Missional resources for making disciples in community and all of that stuff.

Caesar:

And even how to move our churches toward Missional living.

Caesar:

You can go over there and missio publishing.com and check it all out.

Caesar:

There's all the primers there.

Caesar:

A couple of weeks ago, we had Hugh halter on talk a little bit about the tangible kingdom primer.

Caesar:

I've talked to you about the gospel primer.

Caesar:

There's three in that series.

Caesar:

There's also Nick Hardings, amazing book re-imagine church.

Caesar:

That'll help you clarify the win escape busy-ness and fulfill your true purpose.

Caesar:

As the church really goes soup to nuts.

Caesar:

How you moved the whole thing towards Missional living.

Caesar:

Things by Alan Hirsch in there and Hugh halters Bible book and bigger gospel that I've published and there's all kinds of great stuff.

Caesar:

So check out Missio publishing.com.

Caesar:

If you're thinking about how do I move my folks forward, or what's next for our group to study or discuss, or even start to try some new things.

Caesar:

All right.

Caesar:

Missio publishing.com.

Caesar:

I'd appreciate it.

Caesar:

I think you're going to love it too.

Caesar:

Now today.

Caesar:

We're gonna talk about how to stop taking everything.

Caesar:

So personally, and I want to start with explaining what is meant by taking things personally.

Caesar:

I think there's two ways we might look at this and I didn't want to just assume that I was talking about the same thing that you might be hearing.

Caesar:

So first, when we think about taking things personally, first.

Caesar:

Be talking about applying things that are said or implied that are in fact not about you.

Caesar:

So we're taking something external and applying it to ourselves, Hey, that wasn't even about you or what we might mean by taking things personally is taking offense in a situation and being personally offended.

Caesar:

So, Hey, we're taking something.

Caesar:

Someone said really personally.

Caesar:

So those are the two ways, at least that we can look at that.

Caesar:

And I'm going to address both as we move along today.

Caesar:

So I watched a talk recently, that was part of Ted's talk.

Caesar:

You know, those Ted talks, you can see on the internet and learn all kinds of stuff.

Caesar:

They have a series called how to be a better human and.

Caesar:

Talk that I really liked was by a speaker named Frederick Imbo who helps people develop their communication skills and interpersonal skills and all that.

Caesar:

I really liked a lot of what he had to say about taking things personally, but like so much of the other writing and vice that I found out there, it all lacks one key component.

Caesar:

The gospel.

Caesar:

these articles and experts give a lot of good advice and how to stop taking things personally and letting it destroy you and relationships.

Caesar:

But none of them offer good news.

Caesar:

They all leave us with a few categories to work harder on personally, which is definitely not good news.

Caesar:

What we need, what I want is freedom.

Caesar:

I want a completely different perspective on why we often take things so personally, so let me start off with a few good points made by Frederick Imbo.

Caesar:

He says, let's say I'm driving really slowly because I'm trying to find a specific address.

Caesar:

So the person in the car behind me starts honking and flashing their headlights at me.

Caesar:

How do I respond.

Caesar:

Well, oftentimes I'll take it personally.

Caesar:

And you know, this there's so much road rage out there.

Caesar:

Just someone honking at you can freak you out.

Caesar:

And some people I know they would never dare to honk at someone for the same thing in reverse.

Caesar:

See, we take it so personally, I know I shouldn't, but it just happens sometimes.

Caesar:

Or let's say someone cancels a work-related appointment with me at the last minute.

Caesar:

How do I respond?

Caesar:

Well again, often I take it personally, even though it's a professional situation, I take it personally.

Caesar:

I feel I must not be important enough to them, or they wouldn't have moved this who knows what's going on really, but that's how I take it now in my life, I give a lot of training talks and keynote speeches.

Caesar:

I do an awful lot of that, and I like to hold people's attention and draw them into my story and what I'm talking about at the time.

Caesar:

But ill be honest with you.

Caesar:

The very moment when I see someone not paying attention and he start to look at their phone, I usually take that personally.

Caesar:

It won't matter if it's, I'm talking to 10 people or a thousand people or fill in the blank.

Caesar:

I still, if I catch someone looking at their phone, I take it personally.

Caesar:

Of course, I'm not the only person who takes these kinds of things.

Caesar:

Personally.

Caesar:

Maybe you can relate.

Caesar:

I imagine you invite a friend to the movies and she replies, oh, sorry, I'm going to have to work late.

Caesar:

But then you see her on social media later, having dinner with friends that same night, or imagine you worked really hard on a project at work, and you're really proud of the end result.

Caesar:

But the only feedback that seems to come in is criticism.

Caesar:

So you come home and you want to share this terrible experience, but while you're telling your story, Your friend or your spouse walks away to switch on the TV.

Caesar:

What, see, most of us would take these situations personally we'd feel hurt, neglected, or offended, or maybe even betrayed by the other person, or maybe you've had way worse situations when someone literally attacked your ideas or your intentions.

Caesar:

And they were really nasty about it.

Caesar:

We take it personally.

Caesar:

We get offended, right?

Caesar:

And Imbo says at these moments, we believe it's the other person's fault.

Caesar:

They're responsible for what I feel.

Caesar:

They're the one to blame, but here's the thing about taking things personally or when we say, or think I was offended, see no one can really offend you, but you can take offense.

Caesar:

Let me say that again, no one can really offend you, but you can choose to take offense.

Caesar:

You can choose to take what someone has said about us or what they've done and choose to be offended or take it personally.

Caesar:

That's not really about them in that moment.

Caesar:

It's about me, my choice.

Caesar:

It's about what I'm believing to be true in that moment.

Caesar:

Many, many articles that I read and post and books on this subject, almost all of them include this bit of advice.

Caesar:

They say, stop being so concerned about what others think of you, but how do we do that?

Caesar:

See, I think the gospel starts to show us the way out of this.

Caesar:

We need to reorder the importance of who thinks and says, what about us.

Caesar:

You see, God is glorious.

Caesar:

He's the most glorious one in the universe.

Caesar:

And his opinion is what matters most by a long shot.

Caesar:

And he loves you.

Caesar:

He loves you perfectly.

Caesar:

Additionally, when we choose to take offense or take something personally, we're given that person more power than God.

Caesar:

We're making their opinion of us more glorious, and we're putting ourselves in the position of God in a way.

Caesar:

Because we're choosing to let what we think about that other person's opinion be larger and more important in our life than God himself.

Caesar:

Think about that.

Caesar:

We replace God's opinion and his weightiness or his glory in our life with what the other person's thinking.

Caesar:

They're more glorious.

Caesar:

We choose to take control and take offense.

Caesar:

And then we start to build our case against them.

Caesar:

Or against ourselves, but if we believe what is now true of us, because of the good news of the gospel, no one has power over us.

Caesar:

We're free, we'll experience, more harmony and connection between us and others.

Caesar:

And our energies in our emotions can go towards positive things instead of endlessly battling against the things that drive us crazy and just looping and looping and.

Caesar:

Here's some strategies that Frederick Imbo shared in his video, but with a good dose of the gospel thrown in by myself, his first strategy is realize that it's really not about you.

Caesar:

Is he, when I take things personally or I choose to take offense, I'm always convinced that the other person's words or actions are about me.

Caesar:

When I see someone looking at his phone, when I'm speaking, I feel offended.

Caesar:

I think, Hey, I've put so much effort and time into this presentation.

Caesar:

How about a little respect here?

Caesar:

But in fact, if it isn't about me, Hmm.

Caesar:

What if I try to look at it from the other person's perspective and ask myself, why is he or she looking at their phone right now?

Caesar:

Maybe she's just received an important message.

Caesar:

One she's been waiting for.

Caesar:

Way more important than what's going on in the room right now, or perhaps the topic of my presentation's not really his cup of tea or on the contrary, maybe she finds it so interesting that she wants to take notes on her phone.

Caesar:

I know I've done that accidentally and I got myself into hot water.

Caesar:

See, when I take my eyes off of myself, my reputation, my feelings, my utter love of self.

Caesar:

I can make space for understanding.

Caesar:

Rather than just irritation or offense.

Caesar:

I can remember when our daughters were both around 17 years old, not at the same time, but when they hit that sort of 17 to 18 year old age, and they would say things to Tina and I like you're ruining my life.

Caesar:

My life would be perfect if it wasn't for you and where we'd sit there and go, oh, really?

Caesar:

Now, did we choose to take that personally?

Caesar:

Yeah, maybe a little, but probably not because we knew it wasn't really about us and it wasn't about me.

Caesar:

It's about what she wanted or needed in that moment.

Caesar:

She might've just been angry because of a late night curfew that we were applying or enforcing and she just wanted to stay angry for a little longer.

Caesar:

That's all.

Caesar:

Whenever you start to take things personally, try to look at the other person's intention.

Caesar:

Of course.

Caesar:

I know that sounds a lot easier than it.

Caesar:

In theory, but in real life, it turns out it's hard.

Caesar:

When you see two colleagues talk to each other at work and they look at you and start laughing, do you immediately think, oh, they must have noticed my new shoes and they want them to know, you think, Hey, they're laughing at me or they're gossiping about me.

Caesar:

What's going on there?

Caesar:

What did I do?

Caesar:

What are they saying?

Caesar:

It takes a lot of effort to say to yourself, hang on,.

Caesar:

I really have no clue.

Caesar:

They might be laughing about something that has nothing to do with me.

Caesar:

Seeing the positive intentions of the other person requires a bit of self discipline and faith though.

Caesar:

I'm reminded here of this much love verse in first Corinthians 13, starting in four.

Caesar:

Love is patient and love is kind.

Caesar:

It doesn't envy.

Caesar:

It does not boast.

Caesar:

It's not proud.

Caesar:

Hmm.

Caesar:

See how that applies to like, I don't know what they're thinking.

Caesar:

Maybe this isn't about me.

Caesar:

Love it goes on.

Caesar:

Verse five does not dishonor others.

Caesar:

So start to gossip about them, or it's not self-seeking Hmm.

Caesar:

There's the center of the problem.

Caesar:

It's not easily angered or we could say offended.

Caesar:

It keeps no record of wrongs or that one time they actually were talking about me.

Caesar:

So now I'm going to make that assumption all the time and then blame them for how I'm choosing to feel.

Caesar:

It goes on and says, love does not delight in evil, but rejoices in the truth.

Caesar:

Hmm.

Caesar:

How do you get to that?

Caesar:

You might have to ask.

Caesar:

It always protects, always trusts, and this is important.

Caesar:

Always hope.

Caesar:

I always hopes the best.

Caesar:

Doesn't assume the worst, not love, love perseveres in love, never fails.

Caesar:

That's really important.

Caesar:

Like, I feel like I need to read that every time I feel personally offended or, or feel myself choosing to take offense in a situation.

Caesar:

Now, when the it's not about me strategy doesn't work.

Caesar:

Then it usually means it is about me.

Caesar:

Maybe there's only two options here.

Caesar:

So yeah, if thinking, Hey, it's not about me.

Caesar:

Why am I putting myself in the center of this?

Caesar:

I don't know what they're thinking.

Caesar:

Or God's glory is much bigger than theirs when that doesn't work.

Caesar:

Maybe it is about me.

Caesar:

And then it's time to use Imbo's strategy.

Caesar:

Number two, give yourself some empathy and, or speak up.

Caesar:

Let's say that drivers tailgating me, even if I think it's because he's in a hurry.

Caesar:

I need to ask myself, well, was I driving too slowly or driving distracted?

Caesar:

Was I looking at my app for directions?

Caesar:

Was I being self-focused as if I'm the only one on the road?

Caesar:

See, I know all those to be true of myself.

Caesar:

So maybe it was about me.

Caesar:

And when I do that, I may realize that I was at fault and see I'm uncomfortable then, because I don't like that part of myself, which made the mistake.

Caesar:

Hm.

Caesar:

See, that's back to letting myself love rule the situation.

Caesar:

But this time the villain is me.

Caesar:

That's pretty heavy.

Caesar:

And that's when you need to give yourself some empathy and grace and say, or think something like, ah, this hurts a bit because I'm longing so hard to be perfect, or I love to be right.

Caesar:

And I feel sad when I don't feel that way.

Caesar:

But give yourself grace, be patient and kind to yourself.

Caesar:

Remember that?

Caesar:

No, one's perfect.

Caesar:

Or does everything perfectly.

Caesar:

We all get distracted or get into our own little world.

Caesar:

We don't always do things the way everyone else wants us to.

Caesar:

And above all, remember that your identity and your value is not connected to your doing or your performance.

Caesar:

It's connected to our triune God himself, and that never changes.

Caesar:

And some situations after you're sure that you're believing the truth of the gospel and trusting in God's love for you.

Caesar:

And his opinion of you because of Jesus.

Caesar:

It might make sense for you to speak up.

Caesar:

If someone walks away while you're talking to them and pouring your heart out, tell them I'm in the middle of my story.

Caesar:

And you just left me to switch on the TV.

Caesar:

That makes me feel as if what I'm saying or feeling right now is not important.

Caesar:

You see, by opening up and being vulnerable in stating how you feel.

Caesar:

Without blaming the other person.

Caesar:

And then that's important.

Caesar:

Then you increase the chance that they'll understand you and take your needs into account.

Caesar:

And that's a totally healthy way to be and live.

Caesar:

And it's a part of speaking the truth in love and building and maintaining healthy relationships of trust.

Caesar:

And we all want that.

Caesar:

We need there.

Caesar:

Now I know here, some of you may be thinking.

Caesar:

I would find it really hard to speak the truth of my feelings.

Caesar:

Like you just displayed to someone like what you just suggested.

Caesar:

I have a hard time doing that.

Caesar:

I would just let it go and stuff, my negative feelings again.

Caesar:

But let me remind you that God is glorious.

Caesar:

He's the glorious one.

Caesar:

He's the most glorious.

Caesar:

So you don't have to fear others.

Caesar:

And God's great.

Caesar:

So you don't have to be in control of others' responses to your honest feelings.

Caesar:

See you get to explain how you're feeling based on their actions or their words.

Caesar:

So it's not, you're seeing someone talk any new think it's about you.

Caesar:

You don't know, but if someone says something or acts in a way that you might start to feel, oh, am I taking this personally?

Caesar:

You get to remember what's true of you.

Caesar:

And you get to also explain how that made you feel.

Caesar:

But they also get to respond, however they want to, but we're not in control of that.

Caesar:

That's usury that's co-dependence.

Caesar:

We can, we can just let our honesty be as long as we're not blaming them and then let their response be.

Caesar:

And I also want to point out in this second way of seeing things that sometimes it is about me.

Caesar:

We also have an opportunity to learn and grow if we don't choose to take offense.

Caesar:

Yeah, when something comes up and it really is about me.

Caesar:

Well, that's an opportunity we can seek to clarify what the other person is saying or feeling themselves.

Caesar:

We can humbly seek to improve on our skills at something, or be less distracted when driving or fill in the blank.

Caesar:

Right?

Caesar:

It's an opportunity for us, if we'll believe the truth about ourselves first, what God says is true.

Caesar:

And then use that opportunity to grow and learn, but be kind to ourself.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

Be kind to yourself.

Caesar:

No more do to be lies applied there.

Caesar:

Just be kind, don't beat yourself up, but use it as an opportunity to grow.

Caesar:

And in this, I'd like to apply first Corinthians 13 again, but this time to ourselves and I'm going to read it from new living translation.

Caesar:

It's just slightly different, but it'll just give us a new little glimmer there, a little perspective, change on this.

Caesar:

But now when something is about me, we're applying first Corinthians to ourselves.

Caesar:

So we always want to apply it outward, but we get to apply it to ourselves.

Caesar:

So it says, love is patient and kind.

Caesar:

Hey, can you be patient with yourself and kind to yourself?

Caesar:

Like you're not perfect.

Caesar:

Do you expect that?

Caesar:

Do you think that highly of yourself?

Caesar:

Oh, God knows.

Caesar:

You're not, but he still loves you perfectly.

Caesar:

So you can be patient and kind like he is with us.

Caesar:

Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude, so we don't have to win every argument or always be right.

Caesar:

Love does not demand its own way.

Caesar:

It's not irritable . And it keeps no record of being wronged or that person always.

Caesar:

And even though, I mean, this one time I did, but you know, you do this too.

Caesar:

See, we always want to shift that blame back to them, but love doesn't.

Caesar:

verse seven love never gives up.

Caesar:

Love, never loses faith.

Caesar:

It's always hopeful.

Caesar:

Hey, I'm hoping to do better next time.

Caesar:

I think I'm growing in this, but I got to get up and practice.

Caesar:

So maybe I didn't do that the best.

Caesar:

Maybe my presentation was a little meandering.

Caesar:

Maybe it wasn't clear.

Caesar:

Maybe the things I put together in print.

Caesar:

Maybe he didn't read as clearly as I thought it did.

Caesar:

I'm still growing.

Caesar:

I'm hopeful for that.

Caesar:

Love endures through every circumstance.

Caesar:

So give yourself a break, give yourself some kindness.

Caesar:

Give yourself some love.

Caesar:

All right now, it's time to leave you with the big three takeaways from today's discussion.

Caesar:

So if nothing else, you don't want to miss these and you can get a printable PDF of this.

Caesar:

Week's big three as a free download by going to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash big three.

Caesar:

So when you hear these and you go, whoa, I need those, but I can't write that fast.

Caesar:

Just go to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash big three, and we'll send them to you.

Caesar:

So here's the big three for this week.

Caesar:

It's not about you in most situations where we take something personally, our self-love in fear of what others think drives us to be at the center of the issue.

Caesar:

Stop choosing to take offense in the situation and try to look at it from the other person's perspective.

Caesar:

When you choose to take what someone has said and choose to be offended or take it personally, it's not really about them anymore.

Caesar:

It's about you and your choice.

Caesar:

And what you're believing to be true in that moment.

Caesar:

Number two, remembering what God thinks is true about you changes everything.

Caesar:

If we believe what is now true of us, because of the good news of the gospel, no one ever has power over us.

Caesar:

We're free and we'll experience more harmony and connection with others.

Caesar:

And we can put our focus and our energy and all of our emotions . Towards positive things and to building trust in relationships, instead of endlessly battling against that stuff, that drives us crazy.

Caesar:

Number three, be kind to others and to yourself, love always hopes and assumes the best and is never arrogant and self-focused and always be patient and kind to yourself as well.

Caesar:

Remember that?

Caesar:

No, one's perfect.

Caesar:

No one does everything perfectly or the way everyone else wants it done.

Caesar:

And remember your identity is not connected to your doing or your performance.

Caesar:

It's connected to our triune, God who created in his image and that never changes.

Caesar:

That's where our value flows from.

Caesar:

All of this takes a gospel realignment in our hearts, but what a peaceful way to live and be practice this, teach this to others.

Caesar:

Maybe share this episode, teach this to your kid.

Caesar:

Early in their lives and save them a million heartaches.

Caesar:

There is such good news in this.

Caesar:

Hey, and before we go, if you're interested in learning how to apply the gospel like this to all of life and learning, gospel fluency, and learning a full framework for discipleship and mission, I would love to tell you about the coaching and mentorship that we offer.

Caesar:

And I like to have you join us in an upcoming coaching cohort, because I want to get you set up for a big win, making some big progress this fall with your church, with your community.

Caesar:

Now to learn everything about the coaching and even set up a little zoom call, just go to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash coaching Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash coaching.

Caesar:

And we'll set up a time to talk and see what you think I'd love to be on this journey with you.

Caesar:

Now, join me next week.

Caesar:

We're going to talk about fixing your limiting beliefs about discipleship and mission.

Caesar:

Yeah, so often it seems like what people want is systems and tools, and they want the full step one through a billion, but really we need to start with your limiting beliefs about your leadership and how disciples are made and what missions really all about.

Caesar:

We're going to dive deep into that next time I look forward to it.

Caesar:

Hope you'll join.

Caesar:

Talk to you soon.

Announcer:

Thanks for joining us today.

Announcer:

For more information on this show and to get loads of free discipleship resources, visit Everyday Disciple dot com.