Last Updated on August 15, 2023 by Angela Vaz
There are days when you find yourself at peace, and almost nothing can ruin your mood. But there are some days when even the tiniest thing going wrong can ruin your mood and just spoil your whole day.
Have you experienced days like that?
Are there days when someone is slightly rude to you, or someone’s carelessness leaves you at an inconvenience?
You lose your temper, or you get upset.
You can’t stop thinking about it, and you focus on that 1 thing that went wrong nearly the whole day!
And after that point, no matter what happens, you’re unable to let it go, and you’re unable to get back to that place of peace and mindfulness.
In this post, I’m going to teach you how to not let things bother you.
Please don’t feel bad if you always feel like you’re drawing the shortest straw or you can’t get a hold of your emotions when things go wrong.
It’s normal. And most of us go through this.
I had a raging temper when I was growing up. Anything that did not go my way would ruin my mood and frustrate me. I’d take out that frustration on my parents.
And as I grew up, I battled many storms and learned how to keep my cool. I am definitely not perfect, but I choose to focus on my progress instead of my destination.
So, when you’re learning how to not let things bother you, it’s not going to be a 1-day miracle.
This takes time. It’s about becoming mindful and knowing when something is upsetting you and then choosing to feel those emotions and let it go.
Letting go isn’t easy, so let’s talk about some methods that worked for me.
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Why do I get upset so easily?
Most people who do things to hurt us, are not intentionally hurting us. They’re usually trying to avoid pain or not get hurt themselves, and they go about a situation in a way that ends up hurting us.
For instance, if someone is rude to you at a store, it could be that this person has had a bad day. Maybe they got fired at work, or their spouse said something very mean to them.
They’re taking out their frustration on you. It’s nothing personal.
Hurt people hurt others.
And if you want to not let things bother you, you need to end the cycle of hurt by letting it go.
But before that really quick, get my free guide on how to really reset your life.
How do I stop reacting immediately?
As an impulsive person, learning this trait took me years.
Because I react immediately most of the time.
Whenever you find yourself getting upset or angry, remind yourself that you are not in the frame of mind to act with judgment and logic.
You cannot take back the words you’ve said or the actions you’ve committed when you’re not in a good place mentally and emotionally.
So, always take some time off to just let the event wash over you before you react.
I will discuss more about this further in this post.
The cons of letting things get to you:
- Getting angry or upset or making a scene, is only going to make things worse. In no universe did anger actually solve a problem without terrible consequences.
- You’re only increasing its intensity by holding on to the grudge/pain. Suppose someone does something to you that hurt your feelings. You could choose to hold on for a while and then let go or hold on to it for weeks and months. Do you really believe that the other person is paying for it? Or are you?
In short, the best way to live life and actually be happy is to stop obsessing over people and things and to let things go.
Let me explain how you can do this.
How to not let things bother you?
Okay, we’ve covered why things bother us and the cons of letting things get under our skin. Let’s move on to some easy and practical tips you can follow to not let things bother you.
1. Realize that it has happened before and to many others before you
Every time something undesirable happens to you, I want you to remember that you’re not the first person to go through this, and this event has probably happened to a thousand people before you, at least, and they’ve all had to go through what you did.
You are not alone.
And this event is not unique.
When I lost my mom, there were times I’d ask, “Why did I have to lose her? Why me?” And I’d stop myself and remember that almost everyone loses their mom at some point.
And this pain I feel isn’t unique. It hurts, and there are probably hundreds of thousands of people going through it too.
This way of thinking will help you get out of the self-pity rut.
2. Do not react immediately
I already mentioned this before, but this tip will change the way you live your life.
If you react immediately, you’re only going to make things so much worse.
Because you’re not level-headed, you’re reacting from a place of emotional distress.
Take a deep breath and calm down.
Take some time to mull over what has happened. Think about what has happened and try to see it from everyone’s perspective.
- Did the waiter burn your food? Is shouting at him going to change what has happened? Is there a better way to deal with this situation?
- Did that person cut you off on the road because he had a personal vendetta against you? Or was he trying to get somewhere faster because of a personal issue?
- Did she gossip behind your back because she wanted you to suffer? Or had her ego taken a blow because you excelled in something that she didn’t and she did it only to make herself feel better?
Most of the time, people react badly when they assume someone has wronged them.
But if you take some time to mull over it, there is always a second side to the story.
You can’t change what has happened to you; you can only change how you react to it.
Bringing me to my next point…
3. Do not try to control things that are not in your control
Whenever something bad happens that results in me going into a thinking spree, I ask myself, “Is there anything I can do about it?”
I then grab a sheet of paper and write down my thoughts. There was this one time; someone spread a bad rumor about me online.
I was devastated because I was young and naive and really cared about what people thought of me.
I went through many sleepless nights before realizing that I need to let go of the things I cannot control.
I remembered how many fans I had, and I chose to focus on them instead of the haters. I realized that I could not make everyone love me, and that was totally okay.
Bringing me to my next point…
4. Make peace with the fact that you can’t please everyone
If I had to think back on a lot of times when I was genuinely upset, it would be along the lines of, “Oh my God. What would they think? I feel so foolish.”
Your life is really short.
You cannot live for others. You’re here to live for you.
And you cannot live your life worrying about what everyone thinks of you. You’ll never be happy if you do.
Let it go.
Don’t be afraid to say no to people to protect yourself or your mental energy.
Do not be afraid to do things that make you happy.
Learn to be true to yourself and let go of other people’s opinions of you. You cannot change other people.
Everyone is too busy living their lives and thinking about their problems. I guarantee you that even if you cross their mind, they’ll move onto something else in 2 minutes.
So, stop worrying about what other people think of you. It is out of your control. People who truly love you and care about you will try to find the truth and never leave your side.
Focus on those people and let go of everything else.
5. Be kind, it costs nothing
When someone used to cut me off in a queue, I’d get mad. I’d fume inside. And like a bag of rotten potatoes, my mood would be spoilt for hours.
When I practiced the art of not letting things bother me, I started practicing kindness.
I’d say to myself, “Perhaps this person is not feeling well and really wants to get home.”
Sometimes, I’d make a joke in my head like, “Perhaps this person ate something too spicy and needs to use the restroom urgently.”
Either way, I’d find it so much easier to let go and focus on something else.
I became so much happier when I started letting go of things like this, and I had more time for things that really mattered to me.
There is always a reason someone chooses to behave a certain way. Remember, it has nothing to do with you. It’s all on them.
So, let go and find peace.
6. Forgive yourself and start practising self-love
Are there times when you can’t let go of the past where you keep repeating past incidents in your head until you get overwhelmed with sadness or frustration?
I know how you feel because I do it a lot.
And it takes a lot of self-awareness to catch yourself doing it and then self-restraint to stop thinking of the past.
Remember, there is nothing you can do to change the past.
There are times I regret how I behaved in the past or wish I could have reacted differently or made a better decision.
But the truth is, we did what we did because it felt right at the time.
And we wouldn’t be who we are today unless we made those decisions.
So, don’t regret the past.
Accept it for what it is, and move forward with your life.
Forgive yourself for the mistakes you’ve made, and instead of focusing on something you have no control of, focus on what you can control – the present!
7. It’s okay to vent
I always feel better if I vent out my feelings rather than keeping it all inside.
Remember that you are human, and it’s okay to let it out.
It’s alright to call a loved one or a dear friend and just let them know what happened and how you feel.
This will help you get a better perspective and release some of the tension and stress you’ve held on to.
However, if you don’t like telling people about your problems, write it down in your journal.
I journal every single day or every other day, and it really helps me feel better.
8. Focus on better things
Your time is really precious, and you should not let things done by other people bother you.
You have so much more to live for, and it’s okay to get frustrated or stressed for a while, but you shouldn’t put your whole life on hold for something that is out of your control.
So, if something or someone is bothering you, switch your attention to something else that you’d much rather be doing.
Focus on your personal goals and focus on improving yourself.
It will instantly lift your mood, and you will feel better.
9. Reduce your expectations from people and things
Whenever our happiness depends on something outside of our control, there is a very good chance that we will be disappointed.
Everyone is going to hurt you at some point in time.
Human beings aren’t perfect.
And if your happiness is dependent on other things, then that’s not too good for you either because nothing is permanent.
This is the first thing we learn when we meditate – that everything and everyone is impermanent.
So, reduce your expectations from life, from people, and things.
You will be much happier.
Remember, nobody owes you anything.
10. Simplify your life
If you feel that you are constantly stressed and overwhelmed, it may be because there is just too much happening in your life or involved in way too many events and people’s lives.
In this case, I highly suggest that you:
- Simplify your life
- Get rid of these toxic habits
- Let go of toxic friends
- Let go of the past
- How to trust the process and let go
- Declutter your home so that you are living with what you need
11. Love yourself
If you find that you are always angry or sad, it is a BIG sign that you need some self-love and self-care.
Self-love isn’t just about taking a hot bath and reading a good book.
It’s much more than that.
It’s about accepting who you are and understanding that it’s okay to have bad days and bad weeks.
Self-love is about being patient and kind with yourself and focusing on the present and not the past or the future.
Here are some posts that will help you fall in love with yourself:
- The ultimate guide to loving yourself
- 29 self-love quotes to help you heal
- 43 self-love journal prompts to help you fall in love with yourself
- How I combatted loneliness and learned to be happy living alone
- How to get over a painful breakup
- How to be present in the moment
- How to make each day count
- 17 small things successful people do every day
It’s not easy to become strong and I hope this post helped you understand how to not let things bother you. This takes time and you will only get better with practice.
In the end, it’s all about focusing on the bigger picture and understanding that you cannot control everything and everyone.
It’s only your reaction that is within your control – so shift your focus to yourself, your thoughts, and your actions.
And you will find yourself more light and free.