I developed a bad habit.
The first time I said it, I knew it was a lie. So, I let it go.
The next time I said “Don’t worry, I have a very THICK SKIN”, it felt easier to say. Familiarity is a warm place.
Then, it just became habit.
What the heck does it even mean? Thick skin? Well, it is supposed to mean that you are :
- Not overly sensitive
- Don’t take things personally
Most importantly, it is supposed to mean that you are someone who can handle their feelings maturely in the face of criticism or conflict.
I guess the last sentence is the reason I allowed this phrase to creep into my vocabulary. Afterall, I believe that being able to efficiently process feedback is a great trait.
But what happens when someone questions your credibility or trivialises your abilities? How about when someone gossips about you and you hear about it? Or excludes you socially? Or a loved one says something hurtful? Or wait, how about when someone dismisses your opinion in a meeting? Strong, centered people react, right? They set the record straight. They understand that in effect, we teach people how to treat us.
Well, some strong, centered people also develop bad habits. Some strong, centered people start telling other people “Don’t worry! I have a very THICK SKIN”. It is supposed to serve two purposes:
- Make the rude person feel better about themselves
- Diffuse further conflict
But what it really does is :
- Turn the strong, centered person into a victim
- Give the rude person licence to say/do it again
So, I stopped. I stopped lying.
I am NOT thick skinned. I may be resilient and mature BUT I AM sensitive, I DO take things personally and I reckon learning to cancel this ghastly phrase from my dictionary is a pretty mature way to manage my feelings.
Are there any words YOU use to describe yourself that are not true but have become a habit?
Today’s a good day to STOP.
Aluta Continua, my friends. The road is long (for me)