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badgermom2012
It's OK to be disliked.
August 22, 2012 at 6:46 PM

I don't know about the rest of you, but I'm OK with my reputation as an a-hole, lol.  

10 REASONS TO BE OKAY WITH BEING DISLIKED

by Lori Deschene

“If your number one goal is to make sure that everyone likes and approves of you, then you risk sacrificing your uniqueness, and, therefore, your excellence.” ~Unknown

We all know at least one hardcore people-pleaser. You know the signs: She sleeps out in the rain and gets sick so her friend’s dog can fit in the tent. She’s 100% Republican but pretends she’s Democrat solely because her friends are.

If a friend calls her stupid, she whips up a batch of cookies and makes a card that reads, “I’m sorry for disappointing you.” And despite all her efforts to be liked by everyone, many people disrespect her.

Maybe that’s you, maybe it’s not—but odds are, you can relate at least a little to the desire to be well-liked. Who doesn’t want to feel accepted, respected, and appreciated?

For most of my life, my need to be liked overshadowed all my other needs. I was always trying to manipulate perception, adapting myself to receive validation. It was draining and counterproductive, since very few people actually knew me—the real me—which is a prerequisite to liking me.

I’ve since learned it’s actually a good sign if there are some people who don’t accept or agree with me.

I’m not suggesting we should be rude, inconsiderate, or disrespectful. This post isn’t about disregarding other people’s feelings.

This is about releasing our stress about other people’s opinions.

When you’re comfortable not being liked by everyone:

1. It allows you to be true to yourself.

The biggest disservice you can do yourself is shapeshifting to please your “audience” of the moment. It’s exhausting (even to watch) and, more importantly, pointless. No one will get to know who you really are, which will leave you feeling empty.

2. It gives you the power to say no.

I believe people are good at heart. Still, it’s human nature to test each other’s boundaries. When you’re willing to risk being disliked, you’re able to say no when you need to. Your yeses and nos shapes your future, so choose them wisely.

3. You’re more comfortable exploring your feelings.

Doesn’t it feel good to just be where you are without pretending for someone else’s sake? I’m not saying you should act in anger or fear, just that it’s pretty exhilarating to say, “Hell yeah—I’m terrified” (or lonely or weak or struggling) regardless of what people will think.

4. Your candor can help other people.

An angst-filled younger me made a fake voodoo doll for a middle school teacher who was hard on me, but forever changed my life (not my proudest moment). It’s often the least popular people who strike the deepest chord in us. Be unpopular when necessary and push people to be their best. You just may save someone’s life.

5. You can freely express your thoughts.

One of the kindest things you can do for someone else is listen without judging. You deserve that same kindness, but you won’t always get it. People will form opinions as you speak. Talk anyway. Let your words be kind but fearless.

6. It prepares you for greater success.

Pick a popular Twitter user and look at their @replies. Odds are they field their fair share of harsh comments. The higher you rise, the more attention you’ll receive, both positive and negative. A willingness to be disliked helps you deal with the added scrutiny.

7. It teaches you to offer kindness and compassion without expectations.

It’s not difficult to offer compassion to someone who treats you with respect and kindness. What’s more valuable for your personal development, and to humanity as whole, is the ability to do what’s right because it’s right—not because you get something in return.

8. You can inspire other people.

There is someone I know who has the uncanny ability to keep going even when others try to pull her down. I learn from her every day. To this woman, anyone who doesn’t appreciate her assertive, over-the-top personality is a reminder that she is unique and unafraid.

9. You can use your time wisely.

If you want to be liked by everyone, odds are you’re spreading yourself way too thin trying to keep them all happy. We need to use our time judiciously to enrich ourselves and others, instead of worrying about everyone’s perceptions.

10. You can choose to smile anyway.

You could use your energy to make daily inventories of everything that’s wrong—the money you don’t have, the esteem you didn’t earn, the people you disappointed. Or you could commit to being your best, and then just sit back and smile. Life will always be a balancing act. Learn to teeter in serenity.


Photo by Dave Bin M*This is a post I wrote for my first blog in 2009 but never shared here before.

My friend Harriet Cabelly, the Rebuild Your Life Coach, is running an interview and giveaway for my Tiny Wisdom eBook series. Leave a comment on the interview for a chance to win a free copy of the set!


Replies

  • newmommy430
    August 22, 2012 at 6:51 PM
    I always just assume that everyone dislikes me. Then I'm not disappointed when I find out they really do dislike me.
  • MomOfOneCoolKid
    August 22, 2012 at 6:54 PM


    Quoting newmommy430:

    I always just assume that everyone dislikes me. Then I'm not disappointed when I find out they really do dislike me.

    oh.

    well, for the record, i like you :)

  • newmommy430
    August 22, 2012 at 6:56 PM
    Awww. Thanks :-)

    Quoting MomOfOneCoolKid:



    Quoting newmommy430:

    I always just assume that everyone dislikes me. Then I'm not disappointed when I find out they really do dislike me.

    oh.


    well, for the record, i like you :)

  • kajira
    by kajira
    August 22, 2012 at 6:58 PM

    I kinda am indifferent to being "liked" or not. I can always find someone to talk too if I need someone to chit-chat with.

    I try to be polite, civil and as respectful as possible though - whether i like, or dislike someone, I don't need to be rude... Treat others how YOU want to be treated. That's a phrase that stuck with me. 


  • MomOfOneCoolKid
    August 22, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    that is a great article!

    I'm half a people pleaser.

    I'd like to think I'm confortable in my own skin and that I value myself because God values me and because I value me.

    I do try to complement/help people around me. Not to validate me, but because I love seeing their faces lit up.

    I honestly love people because God loves me.

    I like the book "Do it anyways" (or is it a poem?) ...

    It helped me when I was a teacher and my classroom wasn't appreciating my hard work. (I was only a teacher for one year. I can tell you that what I lacked was classroom mgmt skills, but that's another topic)

    Anywho, I've never been in the "in-click" and never really wanted to be...

    But i do appreciate it when people appreciate me... i guess its a mixed bag

  • BaBeezandMe
    August 22, 2012 at 7:04 PM
    Not many people like me and I really don't care about them! The people that REALLY matter (my kids) adore me and that's most important IMHO!
  • badgermom2012
    August 22, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    Yeah, I think we all need a few people to like us (our spouse, a few close friends maybe).  But you can't please all the people all the time and there's no sense trying. 

  • smarieljlee
    August 22, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    I like to make people happy. I am a very polite person. I like that about myself. I do think there is a line between being too much of a people pleaser and being yourself. So, I definitely agree with this.

  • greenmommo
    August 22, 2012 at 11:08 PM
    I can't say I'm a people pleaser, but I'm very aware of how words are coming through. Being blunt is one thing-being rude quite another. I get very upset if I've hurt someone with careless words, although it gets tiresome being that diligent.


    Quoting smarieljlee:



    I like to make people happy. I am a very polite person. I like that about myself. I do think there is a line between being too much of a people pleaser and being yourself. So, I definitely agree with this.




  • greenmommo
    August 22, 2012 at 11:09 PM
    I like you!


    Quoting newmommy430:

    I always just assume that everyone dislikes me. Then I'm not disappointed when I find out they really do dislike me.

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