Friday, April 9, 2010


No one can make you feel inferior without your consent
-- Elanor Roosevelt

This is something that I struggle with. Maybe not everyday but sometimes it feels that way.

What amount truth do you find in the above quote?


That Girl said...

No offense to dear Eleanor, but I don't know if I fully agree with her (in)famous statement.

Words hurt.

Yes, you can strengthen your character until you can withstand most cruel statements. But you know what? Even Christ got his feelings hurt.

The real battle is how we deal with those feelings.

Brooke said...

I think there is strength and truth in the statement, but that doesn't make it easy to abide by. If you're really so sure of yourself that people's words and actions don't hurt you, they probably won't be saying those things to you in the first place.

Madalyn said...

It's hard not to get down on your self. I believe that it's how a person handles ones self and those around them who can help them back up. Some words/situations can be hard to hear but I ultamitly think we can choose to listen or not.

Barbaloot said...

I agree with That Girl. We can build out own self-esteem and work to make sure other's can't tear it down, but I know there are certain people in my life that have brutal ability to really tear me down.

the fowlers said...

I think she doesn't mean that we won't ever feel inferior. I think maybe she means that we can choose whether or not we let it get us so down that we let ourselves be inferior versions of what we really are.

I know I do it all the time. I start thinking that someone is so much better and I shouldn't even try. That's when I let myself become inferior, by not living up to my own potential. It's a choice.

I have a really hard time not doing it, though. Really, really hard time.

Kristina P. said...

I think that words can hurt and I agree with That Girl in that respect, but the bottom line is that we are the only one who can control how we feel about ourselves. So I agree with her quote in that respects.

Amander said...

I agree...with a few caveats, of course. Technically it should be true that if you are strong enough internally what other people think and say won't bother you.

But...when people you care about and people whose opinion you highly value put you down, you are going to feel inferior.

But...if you are looking at someone else's life and feeling inferior, without them saying or doing anything abnormal, and you are feeling inferior, then it's more of an internal thing.

Much more of an answer than you needed, but it's something I think about quite a bit at work. There are so many nuances to self-image!

C & A said...

I once heard a very wise woman say, "Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, get your feelings hurt."

She was referring to marriage, and making it good. When we were first married, we decided to be completely honest with each other because I had seen marriages where it was all, "Don't tell..."

At first it was hard, but as we kept at it, I began to realize that C never intentionally tries to hurt me, but sometimes he would say things that COULD hurt me if I took it the wrong way. Instead of looking at what he said or did, instead I looked at the big picture. Did he wake up this morning with a plan to make me feel bad? No. Does he sometimes say things that I can take the wrong way? Yes. And so on. Anyway, we are still honest, but I can honestly say that yes, it is a choice, but it takes practice. I know my experience is probably different than yours. I am talking about marriage, but I think if someone tries to hurt you (and I know some do), they usually have a pretty low self-esteem, so I just remember that they aren't a whole person. They are hurting inside and as Bill Cosby said, "Hurt people hurt people." Once you realize they are broken glass, you can move past the hurt/inferiority and realize you are a whole happy person and you are above that, you are better than that.

tammy said...

So true. I like what Kristina said. Just like we're in control of whether we let someone make us mad or not. Easier said than done though.

Olivia Carter said...

Oh, let me start off by saying I love Elanor Roosevelt so I might be partial by my opinion.

I think its a true statement. I don't think what she is saying is that "no one can hurt your feelings or no one can make you grumpy" without your consent. No one can make you feel INFERIOR.

I think a lot of people blame other peoples actions or things they say on why they feel bad about themselves. It becomes an excuse, rather than just picking yourself up, dusting yourself off, and moving on.

Does that make sense? I don't think it means that we can all always "rise above" but its a good things to reach for.

wendy said...

That would be great if it were that easy --I believe it is true. BUT I don't know if it really works for everyone.
Not Me. My whole life I have defined myself by what others think about me.
I have never been a strong person.
kinda sucks

Lindsey said...

This is so true and a great reminder!! It is up to us to keep from feeling that way!!

Thanks for sharing!

Cynthia said...

I don't know anyone who doesn't struggle with this from time to time. I've had plenty of people make me feel inferior and, sadly, have probably done it to others without thinking.

Me (aka Danielle) said...

I love that first quote! So true! So Poignant! All of it.

My mother has always told me "Take your power back, if you choose to feel a certain way, then that is your choice."

I agree that it is easier said than done. But hey, we are all a work in progress. A beautiful work, at that!

Thanks for stopping by my blog today! I can't remember the last time I saw you. You've been missed!

Teachinfourth said...

I agree with it, to a point…we do choose how we react, but like it was said before, cutting words can hurt and do their damage.

tiburon said...

I agree with Jason. I recently had it out with someone that I thought was a friend - but she said some pretty hurtful things about me - and I don't know that I can ever get over them.

Lady of Perpetual Chaos said...

I have that saying hanging right by my bed. And every time I look at it it makes me feel a little guilty because I'm "letting" other people make me feel inferior. I'm not sure if I agree with the quote or not, but I do think it's pretty obvious that I have guilt issues. ;o)