In this life’s journey of looking for a little peace and happiness, few choices pay greater dividends than learning to mind your own business.
Minding your own business and staying focused on what is yours removes much of the noise of the human condition.
People are messy. They feel a need to be right, gossip, judge, and engage in combative behavior all the time.
Sometimes it’s for a good reason because there is some wrong that needs to be righted.
Other times, it’s not for a good reason. They may just be bored and have a desire to see a spectacle, as we regularly see in the popularity of reality television and celebrity culture.
Drama and conflict can be fun. There’s no denying that. But diving into that drama and conflict means choosing to disturb your own peace of mind.
Minding your own business is a skill that needs to be learned and practiced to make full use of it.
Let’s take a look at some of the skills that will help you achieve it.
1. Avoid gossiping.
People love gossip.
Who doesn’t like to hear some juicy tidbit about another person?
It’s exciting to feel like you are in the know about some drama that is unfolding.
But there is a problem with that.
Gossip causes unnecessary conflict and stress in your life.
If you are gossiping or receiving gossip, you are intentionally inserting yourself into the personal business of someone else.
People do not like that. You probably don’t like it when other people get involved in your business either!
And why don’t you like it?
There’s the obvious reason that it’s not the business of anyone else. It’s yours.
The not so obvious reason is that gossip often isn’t an accurate reflection of the situation.
There are usually holes in the story, unknown motivations, or the person who is spreading the gossip is sprinkling some additional flavor on top to make the scandal a bit spicier.
That gossip may also stem from something deeply personal and painful.
Oh, it’s so juicy and exciting that Sharon had a blowout fight with her husband. Not so entertaining when you find out the reason why is that Sharon can’t get pregnant, and it’s tearing their relationship apart.
Avoid gossip. It’s not a good thing.
Don’t spread it, don’t receive it.
And if someone tries to spread it to you, just say to them, “Why are you telling me this? This is none of my business.”
That will clearly communicate that you are not interested in gossip.
2. Accept other people as they are.
We are all flawed people trying to make our way in a confusing, often nonsensical world.
People are often messy because they are trying to work through the harm and heartbreaks they’ve experienced.
These emotional experiences can fuel unhealthy behavior and questionable choices.
The greatest thing you can do to find more peace with other people is to accept them for who they are and not try to change or fix them.
You can decide to be a positive influence and encourage people on their path, but you can’t fix anyone other than yourself.
That’s not for you to do, not for a romantic partner, not for your children, not for anyone but you.
That doesn’t mean you should accept bad behavior or not try to intervene if it is within your power to do so.
It’s just that you need to recognize and accept that it’s rarely within your control.
Never give out unsolicited advice. And even if it is solicited, you may find it’s better not to give advice to preserve your peace by not getting involved in their business.
3. Accept responsibility for your thoughts and feelings.
We lose a lot of our power and peace of mind by giving our emotions over to other people.
We cannot control the actions of others, but we can control how we respond to those actions.
Yes, someone might do something hurtful to you, and you would feel justified in being hurt.
Your hurt may be fair and reasonable. But do they think that way? Do they care?
They may not. You may get hurt, stand up for yourself, and find that it goes nowhere because the other person feels justified in their actions.
What do you do with that situation?
Well, you remind yourself that their opinions about you and your lifestyle are not relevant.
It’s not their business any more than their life is your business.
Let them think whatever garbage they want and get on with your life and your business.
That doesn’t mean to ignore all conflict entirely.
Conflict is a necessary part of human interaction, friendship, and relationship building. You’re going to have disagreements with people that you’re close to, and that’s okay.
Those points of conflict serve as building blocks in strengthening a relationship as you work with that person to find resolutions.
But, when it comes to other people passing judgment on you and what you do, you can choose not to care.
It’s difficult to do at first, but it gets easier the more you do it.
You may also like (article continues below):
- The 6 Key Things You Can Do To Find Inner Peace
- How To Stop Gossiping About People: 7 No Bullsh*t Tips!
- How To Avoid Drama And Stop It From Ruining Your Life
- How To Deal With People Who Talk About You Behind Your Back
4. Don’t form unnecessary opinions.
“Do I need to have an opinion on this?”
This simple question can save you a lot of grief in the long run.
As human beings, we love to have opinions about things. But how many opinions do we actually need to have?
The answer is not many at all.
If a situation or other person’s actions don’t affect you, you really don’t need to have an opinion on it, unless you are intent on getting involved.
It’s also difficult to have an informed opinion on all of the things that people like to have opinions about.
There’s always some piece of information that can change the context of a situation, revealing that your opinion was wrong all along.
And for what?
There’s nothing to gain by having unnecessary opinions.
They can help shape your perception and interactions with others, often in a negative way. This results in unfair judgment and disharmony.
They also rob you of meaningful emotional energy to pour into the things that really matter, like a cause you might believe in, working on yourself, or fixing your own life.
Conserve that emotional energy and peace of mind by questioning your opinions.
5. Question your own emotions.
All day, every day we are flooded with emotions about different things.
The important thing to remember is that not all feelings are worth our time and attention.
We may feel like we need to step out of our lane because some emotional impulse is telling us that we need to.
And you know what? That may very well be the case. Sometimes we do have to step outside of our lane.
What we need to question is whether or not these emotions are necessary to act on.
You may find that an impulsive, emotional reaction doesn’t serve you well. Getting involved in the business of others may be the wrong choice to make because you don’t have enough information to act on.
The only way to intercept those emotions is by pausing to question the emotion. Once you do that, you can decide to step outside of your lane if the situation warrants your attention.
Practice makes perfect.
The process of actively guiding your thoughts and actions back into your lane requires regular practice.
It may not come easily to you at first, but the more you do it, the easier it gets.
After a while, you’ll find that you can easily identify what is meant for you and discard the rest with ease.
Minding your own business will reduce the emotional energy you pour out into the rest of the world, leaving you more to work on your peace of mind and harmony.
Life is far less complicated and happier when you’re not fighting battles that are not yours to fight.