Some life challenges help us develop personality traits that better equip us to handle future hardships.
Many of us have gone through extremely difficult phases in our lives. Although they seem unbeatable at times, these very challenges sometimes help us develop personality traits or habits that'll better equip us to handle similar hardships in the future. To better understand what are the types of traits or habits people developed to help them down the road, Reddit user u/Educational-Act-1081 asked r/AskWomen: "What personality trait have you developed over the years that have made you stronger/more equipped to handle life’s challenges?"
Here are the top 25 honest and thoughtful responses:
"Self-expression. I used to be stoic, less emotional. I used to appear far more stable and more resilient. I'd dissociate from my own emotions at the drop of a hat in order to function better. But the problem was that I was so out of touch with my own emotions that 99% of my life was about reacting and surviving. I had no idea what I liked or what I wanted. I didn't like myself, or my life, or the world.
In the past few years I've been paying more attention to me. Being more selfish. Expressing my femininity. Crying in front of people. Dancing in public. The thing is, if you saw me then vs now you'd probably infer that I'm less stable than before. Weaker. More sensitive. But I'm actually learning to feel my feelings. To want things, and not just want to avoid things. To express myself because there's a joy in connection with people, rather than trying to express myself strategically in ways that people will approve of.
This makes me stronger because I actually have motivation now. I actually want to make a good life for myself and don't want to settle for a tolerable existence anymore." — pm_me_ur_headpats
"The ability to take criticism and feedback in the spirit in which it was given; especially in my relationships.
My boyfriend and I give each other a hard time sometimes, just joking around, but I went too far the other day and joked about something I didn't know he was insecure about and hurt his feelings. He told me he didn't like what I had said so I apologized and gave him a hug and thanked him for telling me so I could avoid that topic in the future. He cried and thanked me for understanding and not getting defensive because he has never been with someone that reacted positively when confronted with their own bad behavior." — kokihi_55
"For the sake of my own mental health and well-being, I’ve learned how to look at something, take a deep breath, and say 'fu** it.'
You can't win everything and that's how life goes. Accept it and move on. Being resilient is based on the ability to take a punch and get up. Not to sound like a stoic, but you just have to learn how to disconnect your emotions and other attachments in order to do that. It’s hard but you'll get far." — grandadsfearme
"For me, it's allowing myself to feel negative emotions. My first instinct every time I feel sadness or tears coming is to push it away, not accept it. Now, I have learned to say to myself it's okay to feel sad, it's okay to cry.
All that suppressed unhappiness did me a lot of harm in the past, of course, and it took me a long time to accept that I was entitled to feel upset about upsetting things. No prizes for guessing where it came from: a childhood where tears were scorned and the only emotion ever expressed by adults was anger, though kids were severely punished for that, of course.
It's such a relief to not be a tyrant to myself about emotions anymore. I feel so much stronger for it, because they don't get suppressed and fester." — exfamilia
"I no longer care what people think of me.
I used to spend SO much energy managing other people's emotions & tip-toeing around family members/friends etc. One day I asked myself who in my life ever does the emotional labor and tries to manage my emotional state at the expense of their own?
Answer: Noone." — meadow_faye
"Becoming more silent in the presence of toxic people. The less you give them, the less they have to harm you with." — TwoAgitated1182
"Give very few Fs. Whether it be myself or how I and my kids interact with the world around us. We go about our business in a civilized and orderly fashion We treat other people with decency. But as for the rest of it, we do our own thing." — Spiritual_Lemonade
"Asking for feedback. All. Of. The. Time. It’s helpful in my work environment, my relationship, and my friendships. Allowing/creating that space for another person to be transparent about something that could be potentially damaging to the dynamic really releases a lot of unnecessary tension. Plus, it eases my anxiety because I know there's not something festering or hovering that I'm completely oblivious to. Overall it's made me more confident, and also more receptive to other people's feelings and viewpoints." — soulchxld