Have you been accused of taking things personally?

Just like anyone else, I sometimes take it personally when someone takes something personally. But is it something to shame others for? Should we shame ourselves over it? I see even those who are against shaming and belittling others doing it too. Even those who embrace emotions as necessary to healing, also shame those who take things personally.  Shocker, I’ll say! It’s a cultural pandemic. What is going on here?

I have been writing on this topic for some time and I have been thinking that maybe we are not making mistakes by taking things personally? I think, by design, we might take things personally. Why? “Taking things personally” is only a fancy phrase that really means a trauma response. When we are triggered, we might be experiencing an emotional flashback. This means we are (unconsciously) back in the past. So, by design we personalize other people’s language to (unconsciously) make our emotions surface so that we can eventually express them. What if people don’t mean to take things personally? What if we are taking personally other’s taking things personally? We might have to take the same issues personally thousands of times before we are able to have a cathartic insight-inducing emotional release which, if we commit to often enough, will bring us to a point where we no longer take things personally?

We can take things so personally that we don’t see that those taking things personally is not personal. How about that for irony?  But go on and take it personally anyway and learn something new about yourself. Use it as a catalyst to surface your emotions so you can express them and be free from them to such a point where you no longer take things personally or take personally what others take personally.
I take things personally when people take personally what I have said or done because of my own unresolved trauma. When we can sit back and see that we might all be in pain triggering other’s pain by  probable design, it can be a game-changer.

“I actually feel that the whole concept of “taking something too personally” is a huge shame crock. I think we are persons, with emotions. Our culture doesn’t allow an emotional presence or response to be acceptable – everything is to be more rational, more mentalized, more organized according to collective habits of thought and mind and action. BUT I think that is wrong and hurtful and culturally traumatizing. I believe most of us have been culturally traumatized – even those who don’t recognize themselves as such. SOME of us yes have quicker triggers due to trauma we have experienced and the patterns we carry from that. So its harder for us to remain in mainstream mode when something triggers. Those of us who simply can’t carry on the collective mantra in the way we are expected to may actually have a huge gift to offer to our world…. I believe life and interaction is intended to be emotional, personal…. Maybe we can wake up our own individual little corners of the world to the validity of what we feel and how we respond, and how the others around us can begin to explore that option, that possibility, too…. of being real, of being present, not mentally boxed into what our culture expects us to be….. ”

~Sara Joy


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