Thursday, October 03, 2019

Get a Thick Skin!

People have often worried about what people do or say about them,  since time immemorial. It’s a common type of worry.

Such worry weakens people in the face of rejection or outside opinion. It predisposes them to unnecessary fears and low levels of performance.

Even gifted, talented people struggle with this. 

My teenage patient, Don, for instance, is a child prodigy in piano and music composition. One time, he posted a piece in Facebook where he got some criticism or disapproval.

In reaction to that, Don withdrew. He got depressed and enraged during our sessions. He became too demoralized to be able to continue on with his creative process. 

One cure for him: Get a thick skin!

Merriam-Webster defines “thick skin” as the “ability to keep from getting upset or offended by the things other people say or do.”


A thick skin gets you to put your best self out there and worry less about what people think or say.

It gives you serenity to thrive. As Marcus Aurelius put it, “The tranquility that comes when you stop caring what they say. Or think, or do. Only what you do.”

That is not to say you should avoid feedback. You should welcome it. It’s about growth. But differentiate it from malicious criticism, which is aimed to break you down.

In any case, use feedback or criticism to fuel your own momentum to create more in your life. Redirect the energy to get you going and be more positively productive.

You can only do that when you develop a thick skin. If you want to have your best life or perform publicly, you need to grow a thicker skin.

Get one now!