I was at a coffee shop this weekend and overheard a girl beside me talking about her fitness journey and how it transformed her life. She was speaking with such excitement that she was almost tripping over her words.
Her shoulders slouched. She had recently stopped sharing her journey because a few people reached out with snarky comments, telling her to stop ‘bragging’ about her accomplishments.
You can imagine I almost lost it.
Five minutes earlier she was beaming about her transformation and the impact it’s had on others, and the next she’s questioning her worth based on a few unwarranted comments. It’s a known fact that one negative comment can override nine positive ones, but there has to be a way to truly not let the negative ones affect us so much.
There’s a simple question I ask myself, which I’ll share in a second, but the simple explanation for why I find it so effective is that our perspectives change depending if we’re on the winning side or the losing side.
It’s the adult version of being a sore loser.
Anyone remember being one of those during competitive team sports?!
If you were on the winning side of a team sport, you remember the joys of jumping around and celebrating each of your teammates for their awesomeness. Contrast that with being on the losing team. There was no jumping around or excitement. In fact, the jumping around and excitement was actually irritating from that vantage point.
And this my friends, was being a sore loser.
Now go back to the winning team… did you ever look across the field at the losing team and think, “Gosh, next time I’ll play a little bit worse… next time I’ll mope off the field instead of celebrating”.
Of course not!
Which got me thinking… why are we so affected by sore losers in all other areas of life?!
For the girl at the coffee shop who was more focused on the negative comments instead of the positive ones, there’s only one question she needed to ask herself: is this feedback coming from winners or sore losers?
Those who aren’t comfortable in their bodies will see your fitness routine as bragging. Those who aren’t satisfied with their careers will look at yours through a negative lens. Those who aren’t satisfied with their finances will label every purchase you make as selfish.
Let’s get better at questioning external opinions before allowing them to influence our lifestyles. Distinguish between feedback that will push you towards growth versus what is simply insecurity disguised as advice.