Everywhere you turn it seems like there are more insults than ever flying around. With all of the attacks it can be very difficult to protect your mental health.
But what if I told you there is a way to turn the insults and criticism into blessings? What if instead of getting angry at the person who criticized you or feeling bad about yourself for being so sensitive, you could turn their words into deeper self-love? Even better, the solution will end the strife and create deeper empathy and connection for you both!
I know that sounds impossible, but I will show you a foolproof way that works every time.
The first thing to recognize:
whenever we judge, blame, criticize, or hate anyone and anything, all we are ever doing is talking about ourselves. A piece of ourselves we are not aware of, and ultimately we haven’t forgiven. That is because at the core of our criticism and insult are denial and projection.
It may be true that this other person is doing something we disapprove of, but the only reason we can see it in them is that the same perfect imperfection is operating in us as well.
It happens in one of two ways: directly or indirectly.
Discovering how we are directly caught in our denial and projecting that onto others is very simple to uncover. What if I said to you, “I can’t stand men who wear bright-colored suits and decorate their house in all these bright colors”? Who am I describing? Myself! Look at my videos, see how I dress and decorate. Sometimes when we criticize others, we’re directly doing it to ourselves. Unless our denial is severe, that’s easy for us to see.
Discovering how we are indirectly caught in denial and projection is more challenging to see and requires a bit of self-discovery and practice.
I’m going to give you the secret and tell you about the day I discovered the indirect. I’ve always had this frustration with the way people drive: merging on the highway to slow, people in the left lane going too slow, and various other ways people don’t abide by the rules of the road. I would scream, exclaiming others’ stupidity. One day I was at a light and found myself yelling at this truck in front of me,
“Why won’t you go? I hate stupid drivers!”
I paused to remind myself that the screaming, judging, criticizing, and blaming I was doing were really about me. But I was confused and thought out loud,
“This can’t be about me. I would never do what he is doing?”
That is when the secret finally came to me. I reminded myself that modern neuroscience now shows that the old paradigm is wrong. We don’t actually become what we think. Instead, we feel before we think in almost every instance, and therefore, we all become our emotions.
I then pondered
“What am I feeling, and what emotional words am I using to communicate what is inside me?”
Specifically, I asked myself,
“What is the emotional content of the words I am using to judge, blame and criticize him?”
It was “I hate stupid drivers.” Do you see it? “Stupid.”
Maybe you don’t know my life story, so here is some insight into how I discovered my indirect denial and projection. I have struggled with multiple addictions, married two narcissistic women, one of which was physically and verbally abusive, played two professional sports I never wanted to play, filed bankruptcy, and at one point nearly took my life.
As the awareness hit, I felt this blow deep in my stomach when I recognized,
“I’m literally the dumbest person I’ve ever met. Look at all of those stupid decisions. No wonder I can’t stand the way people drive. I have no clue how to drive my own life!”
I was never aware that I was using the way other people drive to scream back at me until that moment. Nor was I aware that I was begging myself to do even deeper work to heal my pain. But, most importantly, I was desperate to send myself the message that I am not stupid, just perfectly imperfect, and I must learn to forgive myself.
I am happy to share that now, I rarely notice if a person doesn’t follow the rules of the road. By healing the pain from the past and forgiving myself, I’m done with shaming and inflicting pain upon myself.
I want you to have this same freedom, so now I want to show you:
The 5 Steps To Turn An Insult Into a Blessing.
1- Everything we judge, blame, hate, or criticize is an attempt to help ourselves, see, admit, and heal the pain from our past and forgive our perfect imperfections.
2-Look for the emotional content. Focus on the emotional words you are using to criticize the person, place, or thing? You may not be doing the exact thing, but the emotional words allow you to see what you are doing.
3- Look for the metaphor. In my case the way others drove was a metaphor for my life decisions. I couldn’t “drive” my own life.
4- Once the awareness arrives, recognize you are trying to communicate to yourself how passionate you are about healing the pain from your past and you are imploring yourself to put a plan in place to achieve that recovery.
5- Give yourself grace and forgiveness. We are all perfectly imperfect, and as a society, we have never been taught how to be a parent, have a relationship, or been given these essential life skills. Our parents were not taught either. Life and relationship skills are the least taught and, therefore, most deficient in us all. None of us can be blamed for doing the best we could with the information we have been given. If we do step four, we can change that because as we know more, we can do more.But, that is only half of the process.
What about when someone insults us? How Kenny, do we turn that into a blessing?
I am so happy you asked. To show you that, I’m going to share a comment I received on Facebook on one of my videos about a year ago. The watcher said the following:
“You are an esoteric, egocentric con man trying to convince yourself that you are something other than a garden variety personality, coupled with an average wit. Unfortunately, those you would most like to convince of your worth are the ones that most easily recognize how basic you are.”
And here was my reply:
“I would agree that yes, I can be egocentric. It’s something I’m always working on. You’re also correct that, unfortunately, I do have an average wit. My older brother is much funnier than I am, and I’ve always been jealous of that. I also think it’s true that I was quite the con man, especially when I was younger. It was just the best I could do. I didn’t have any self-esteem, so everything had to be a con. I can definitely own those traits. I know that I’m very thankful that you see so much of me. It’s always a tremendous gift when somebody invests their valuable time in seeing all of me.”
Why did I choose to respond this way?
For one, I felt defensive which let’s me know the commenter is correct. I do struggle with my ego, and I do wish I had a better wit. So I owned my perfect imperfections! It is no different than saying I have blue eyes and the sun rises in the east. Healing the pain from the past and forgiving ourselves allows us to hear the truth from others. As I always say,
“When we learn to forgive our perfect imperfections, they can’t hurt us with them anymore.”
I chose not to respond to this portion of his comment, “those you would most like to convince of your worth are the ones that most easily recognize how basic you are.” Because for me, it did not ring true. I know that because I did not feel defensive about it, I felt nothing. So, that means one of two things. It is not accurate, or as I progress on my healing journey, I will become aware that he was correct. But, since it is not valid for me at this point in my journey, I just allowed him to have his reality.
While the commentator correctly saw imperfections in me, his authentic self is desperate for someone to make him aware of the five steps to turn an insult into a blessing so he could finally not only hear but heal and forgive himself. To understand how the insulter is trying to communicate to himself, just flip the “you” into an “I”.;
“I am an esoteric, egocentric con man trying to convince you that I am something other than a garden variety personality, coupled with an average wit. Unfortunately, those I would most like to convince of my worth are the ones that most easily recognize how basic I am.”
What is the lifelong quest of the human being? Connection, authenticity, and vulnerability. This man could not have been more authentic and vulnerable, and all he is missing is a society that advocates teaching us basic life skills. That is the blessing. Insults, criticism, blame, and hatred of any person, place, or thing is each individual’s attempt to share the deepest darkest, most heartbroken, and perfectly imperfect part of themselves.
3 Steps To Never Miss The Blessing.
- Own your side of the street- Look for defensiveness and allow yourself to accept truth.
- Turn it around.
- Empathize and appreciate.
What the commentator said about me had truth! At first, I was upset – of course, I was, I am human and because of my ego problems, in moments I am insecure. But when we get that defensive reaction, it is a sign of denial which means we are trying to hide from the truth. So I paused, asked myself what was true, and forgave myself for being perfectly imperfect in those areas. His so-called insult gave me the blessing of loving and forgiving myself more. So how could I be even remotely upset at him? Remember, when we shout at others, we’re really screaming at ourselves – and when others scream at us, they’re doing the same.
Empathize and appreciate.
This gets to step 3: empathize and appreciate. When people insult, they share a deep, dark, perfectly imperfect part of themselves they’ve never healed or forgiven. This man isn’t these things – those thoughts were placed in him as a child, and he’s carried them his whole life. My heart breaks for him! He doesn’t even know that’s how he sees himself. He’s in tremendous pain, and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone.
Can you now see the blessing that insults provide us all? Either a person is seeing our perfect imperfections which allow us to heal and forgive ourselves more deeply or the insulter is expressing their unhealed pain and being incredibly vulnerable with us. Connection and intimacy are now possible for us both.
Imagine if both political parties and activists on all sides were aware that while there may be a fault on the other side, the perfect imperfection they are most desperate to change resides in themselves? Imagine if in a relationship, both parties knew this as well? Imagine if everyone knew that their judging, blaming, hating, insulting, and criticizing was really a request to heal and forgive themselves and a request for empathy, understanding, and connection?
Enjoy The Journey!
If you want to gain emotional mastery so that your thoughts are not filled with painful emotions, I have created this masterclass for you!
To learn more, check out the video here: