You have, haven’t you? It’s such a sick and rotten feeling especially if that someone means something to you. In my case, it has to be important people like my supervisors, lecturers, definitely people I love/care for, my (sister’s) dog (no kidding), the list goes on.
My advice to us (both you and myself) is so succinct you can use it as a mantra when you do your yoga. My advice to you is to say “who cares?”. I used to overload my neurons with worry over what people think of me. I used to feel awful for days if my lecturer/supervisor thought I wasn’t up to par. If a girl friend told me I looked fat, I’d believe I was ugly. It’s a good thing, in a way. It motivates me to work harder and persevere and develop a thicker emotional epidermis. But as for the negative emotions that eat at me, I carried that around for the longest time and it just messed me up inside. If you, like me, are an overly emotional person, you’d understand so well the black cloud brewing up an endless storm over your head. So I made a conscious effort to realize that:
1. The person isn’t thinking about it anymore. Most likely, he/she made that comment at that moment and stopped right there. Don’t you realize that he/she has other things in his/her personal life to worry about? So why are YOU worrying about something he/she has dropped?
2. To quote my best friend, “So what? So what if someone isn’t noticing your work or doesn’t think you’re good? Will that change who you are? Will it cause the quality of your work to deteriorate? Does it make you out to be a worse person than you are? No, no and no. In fact, 5 years from now, it won’t matter.” Okay, he didn’t really say all that. I paraphrased it.
3. You have countless other chances to prove your worth. So don’t look back. Look forward.
Of course I don’t look for excuses to produce work below par. Of course if I know I’m not good enough, I should work harder. Of course to me (because I’m such a perfectionist — as is my best friend), every day is another shot at being a better me in every way. Of course no one has to know what’s going on in my personal life. But if someone writes me off on the surface level just because of an incident, then well, who cares? I work 35 hours (paid hourly) a week besides doing a PhD on a daily basis. I’m a carer for my cancer patient mum (who’s a single mum as my dad passed away a few years ago). I’m the eldest of 4 siblings who’s in charge of what they eat, what they wear and whether they get their work done especially when my mum’s on chemo. I’m not saying I don’t slack and flag and fail some days. I’m not saying I’m strong the whole while. I’m not using any of these as an excuse. What I’m saying is that no matter the odds, what’s important is that I’m charging forward like a bull (or like lemmings who want to throw themselves off cliffs). And what people think of me .. meh~ who cares? I don’t. You shouldn’t either. No one knows your battle so they can think what they want and what they think sure as hell is none of your business (:
Chin up and work hard. You can do this (and so can I).