Don't take it personally
One of Don Miguel Ruiz’ 4 Agreements for life is this: don’t take anything personally. After applying this principal to my life, I found out that other people’s thoughts or opinions have nothing to do with me and, therefore, no longer touch me in any real way.
Even if there is an opinion or judgment directed straight at me, I only consider it valid if I agree that it is true. If it is true, then what is there to get upset about? I can be honest and deal with it. If it is untrue, then there is also nothing to get upset about because I cannot be diminished by a perception that isn’t true.
Furthermore, I don’t need anyone’s blessing to state my truth, to experience my life the way that I do, to choose my own preferences, tastes, or anything else. I do not require anyone to understand what it feels like to carry the burdens of a middle-aged white man, nor do I need them to agree with my politics, choice of profession, spirituality or anything else.
Nobody holds me back from being me, and the same is true for each of us. The Tao Te Ching says, “Care about people’s approval and you will be their prisoner.” (verse 9)
If something that someone else says or does bothers you, then perhaps the real problem is that it bothers you. The solution is not found in the fight to change everyone else; rather, to go within, discover the true self, learn self-love, and embody all truth and freedom without asking anyone’s permission.