Do you worry about things people say to you over and over?
Do you often find yourself easily upset, emotional, angry and sensitive to words?
When an insensitive comment is said to you by someone close, do you find yourself thinking about it over and over? Do you react?
Being overly sensitive can mean it’s possible you might make a big deal out of something small, or make a huge deal on a regular basis out of everything. Either way, this type of thinking is likely to make you feel extremely frustrated, upset, sad, or angry.
Let’s imagine you think you are taking things to heart too often. You’re being told by a friend or family member that you get upset over “every little thing”. It can be isolating and confusing not knowing why you’re picking fights with people around you, and why you just can’t ‘let it go’. If only the catchy phrase from “Disney’s Frozen II” movie was so easy, right!?
The idea that this person has said something mean, rude, or offensive, or has made a joke you didn’t think was funny, becomes stuck in your mind. You don’t know how to make it go away. At the same time, you don’t know if you should bring it up with them for fear you will get shut down or end up in an argument.
Taking things personally is an unhelpful thinking style that can lead to symptoms of anxiety, low mood and depression. It can interfere with how you interact with others and result in social withdrawal, escape, or avoiding people all together.
CHECKLIST TO DETERMINE IF YOU ARE TAKING THINGS TOO PERSONALLY
IF YOU CHECKED MORE THAN HALF OF THE ABOVE, WHAT SHOULD YOU DO?
• Understand that someone else’s behaviour is about them, not you
• Be your best self, and own it. Your opinion of yourself is what matters most
• Learn to manage negative thoughts and emotions – don’t be afraid to ask for professional support
• Direct your energy and time towards fulfilling your own valued goals
Once you have tried these tips at home, engaging with a professional such as one of our team of therapists allows you to develop a complete understanding of what’s happening and why. You can work together to create strategies to manage and overcome the negative thoughts and feelings that continue to make you feel negative about yourself.
Taking things personally, and being ‘overly sensitive’ is likely to affect how you engage with others, and also your ability to open up and build healthy relationships. Don’t be afriad to get in touch, as sometimes a little support and direction will set you on your way to living a happier and more confident life.