I am 30 and I think way too much about things happening around me and to me. Once I overheard one of my best friends speaking ill about me behind my back and since then it’s been very hard for me to deal with her. I know it’s a really small thing to cry about, but it really did shake my faith in people. I can’t help thinking about how double-faced people are. Is there anything called trust left in this world? How can I make anybody my ‘best’ friend? Why did she do that? These questions keep haunting me. Please help.
Before we put the onus or the burden of its definition on someone else, we need to understand what ‘trust’ means. You have given the example of a friend ‘speaking ill’ behind your back — why don’t you explore the possibility that your friend was critiquing you rather than criticising you? If this person is your best friend, why was she not able to talk to you and address the issue jointly? Is it that your friend feels that you will not have a positive response to any sort of critiquing of your character and hence feels compelled to discuss the issue with another friend? Consider the possibility that they were simply seeking a solution to the problem.
But if you’re the sort of person who is open to criticism, willing to address your faults, and still your friend has gone behind your back, it is time to look for new friends. That’s a judgement call that you need to take. Avoid playing the victim, as it’s a self-defeating attitude and acts as a barrier to finding creative solutions to a problem. It would be ideal if we could all view life through rose-tinted glasses; unfortunately life is full of situations where you face disappointment, despair, and sadness because of others’ actions. The only thing we are in control of is our reaction to these situations.
Many times, knowingly or unknowingly, we end up disappointing our dear ones too. To avoid this, communication is important — talk freely with them to avoid any unnecessary misunderstandings. Clearly explain your point of view, and keep an open mind to see others’ perspective. The source and solution of every problem lies with us.
Introspect, see where you can do something to make a situation better. You will have many ups and downs in life, seize every experience. Mingle freely with people from either sex, with people of all ages and backgrounds, and see your horizons widen. Don’t become a prisoner of your own mind.
(The writer is an image consultant and corporate trainer. If you have queries for him, send them to email@example.com)