ASK ANDREA- How to Respond When Someone Impugns (Attacks) Your Character

ASK ANDREA – What is ASK ANDREA  all about?  Well, you probably remember the Dear Abby Column and the Hello Heloise Columns in the newspaper. The ASK ANDREA Blog is the modern day version of Dear Abby. So basically you can ask me anything and I and my team of experts will answer your questions. We invite fellow Hello Beautiful Ladies bloggers to also share and respond with their ideas and suggestions.  Recently  I was asked the following question by a Hello Beautiful Lady Blogger? How should I respond when someone impugns (attacks) my character on a Facebook or Instagram post, in person or in front of other people?

♥ First of all, I suggest you take some time and count back from 5 to 1 if the verbal attack is in person. You may  want to say something like – I’m not sure how I want to respond to this right now so let me take some time and get back with you about how I feel about your comment or how you just treated me.  If it’s on social media take 5-10 minutes or longer if you need to and do a short meditation to calm your nerves and your mind so that you do not respond immediately. Our first responses can often result in anger and in saying things or reacting in a way we may regret later. Something that I find works well is to respond with “I can see that you are upset about something, I will pray for you and send positive energy and thoughts your way.”

♥ Do not respond in haste. I recommend a calm and measured response this will help diffuse any negativity. Do not sink to their level, by responding in a mean or negative manner or lashing back out at that individual.  Instead react from a place of love, understanding, and forgiveness in your heart.  Think about what may have caused them to say or do the action. Are they going through something in their life that is stressful to them, are they jealous, angry, do they perceive a loss, do they perceive you as a threat. Review in your mind if you have actually done something that harmed or hurt this individual for which you do need to apologize?  It never hurts to be the bigger person and say you are sorry. That will enable you to get to the crux of the issue sooner so that it can be resolved.  Keep in mind when someone attacks another individual they are coming from a place of insecurity in their life and personal being.

♥ When people criticize you or put you down always consider the source. Is the criticism worthy of reflection is the individual sharing the criticism with you out of love and respect and to be helpful to you, or are they coming from a place of jealousy, competition, spite, or anger? Reflect on the criticism and if it seems logical and warranted accept it and say thank you for sharing that with me. I hadn’t thought of things that way. 

♥ I recommend the book “What You Think of Me is None of my Business” by Terry Cole-Whitaker.  I love this book because people are often so worried about what others think of them when in reality everyone else is worried about what you are thinking about them. Why don’t we all just concentrate on being our best self, treating everyone with love and respect and stop judging and comparing ourselves to others?  Our self-worth is not defined by our things, our social status, what we have, how big our house is, what car we drive, our job, our career, what position we hold, who we know, where we live, how much money we make, or how beautiful we are on the outside.  Our self-worth comes from self-love and self-acceptance, inner beauty that radiates outward then, and only then can we truly love others unconditionally and be able to accept everyone for who and what they are, and look for the good in all. The bottom line is this – You can’t take it with you when you die. All you can take is the memories you made and the time you shared with family, friends, loved ones and the impact you made on the world. So let’s all go out and make this world a better place to live in.

♥ People don’t have to be like you, for you to like them. The only reason we like people to be like us is that it validates who we are and makes us feel better about ourselves.  We generally hang around people who are like ourselves. If we really want to expand our horizons then we need to step outside of our comfort zone and start interacting with and accepting people who aren’t  just like us. Do you really want to be hanging around all the time with a bunch of  “mini me’s”?  I don’t. I strive to value the differences in all individuals, I enjoy sharing in others opinions and beliefs because it expands my horizons and makes me a better, more loving, giving accepting, individual. 

♥ I tend to gather friends from all walks of life and I love the diversity they bring into my life.  I started a women’s gathering group with all of these lovely women I had met throughout different periods of my life. I wanted them to get together and share experiences with each other, be a support group for each other, help build each other businesses and so on.  Unfortunately, a year later I disbanded the group because of all the jealousy, fighting, bickering and backbiting. Really?  Aren’t we all grown-up now, aren’t we past this stage. We should be. I’ve always said you can tell a lot about a person by the way they treat the wait staff in a restaurant.  No one is beneath you and you aren’t better than anyone else. We are all struggling to survive the best we can and the best we can hope for in life is to have people in our lives who will support and uplift us to help ease our burdens.   I challenge all of you Beautiful Ladies to make a new friend or acquaintance every week. I challenge you to greet strangers and the people you meet with a smile and a compliment. Make someone’s day. You will find that you are happier  and you day goes smoother.

It’s really simple – follow the Golden Rule – Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Treat Others How You Want to be Treated. 

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