Do you really have the courage to be disliked?



Social Media Special

In a world of social media likes, having the courage to be disliked is freedom from fake ego

Last year, a Japanese book, The Courage to be Disliked sold like hot cakes in the land of the rising sun, and the rest of Asia. ‘The Courage To Be Disliked’ though isn’t just a book but a Japanese philosophy based on the analysis of the work of 19th-century psychologist Alfred Adler, who had established that happiness lies in the hands of each human individual and does not depend on past traumas.

Authors of The Courage To Be Disliked, Ichiro Kishimi and Fumitake Koga, talk about how to brush off social pressures and trust in your innate self-worth to find happiness.

The reason for the success of this philosophy is that in all societies people are constantly trying to please others and worry over how they will see us. 



This exercise to always please others contributes directly to our own selfworth – it’s exhausting and making us more unhappy than ever.

In this complex digital world, we are perpetually weary of saying or doing the wrong thing, lest we lose face or face ‘dislike’. Kishimi and Koga believe if we become a little more courageous and know that what others think of us is completely beyond our control, it can set us on the path to a peaceful existence. Here’s how you can embrace the courage to be disliked:

ACCEPT THAT YOU CANNOT PLEASE EVERYONE

Whatever you do or say will displease someone, somewhere. Know it that it is not possible to please everyone. If you try too hard to please, you are setting yourself up for a fall. To be true to yourself means accepting how you feel, expressing your truth and accepting that everyone is not going to agree with you; this acceptance will free you from the deep-rooted inner misery that keeps us from being happy.

KNOW THAT ALL RELATIONSHIP PROBLEMS MIRROR INNER CONFLICT

You are not the source of every conflict you face. The problems you have with others reflect their conflicts too. Says Kishimi in the book, “A healthy feeling of inferiority is not something that comes from comparing oneself to others; it comes from one’s comparison with one’s ideal self.” Don’t feed the need to be acknowledged.

SEE THAT SEEKING RECOGNITION IS AN EGO TRAP

In a world of social media likes, where everyone looks forward to a ‘like’, having the courage to be disliked is freedom from fake ego. Accept yourself as you are, without the need for those likes. Resist recognising and celebrating what you have already achieved. “The courage to be happy also includes the courage to be disliked. When you have gained that courage, your interpersonal relationships will all at once change into things of lightness,” adds Kishimi, as one of the golden rules.

DON’T ALLOW ANYONE TO MAKE YOU FEEL INFERIOR OR SUPERIOR

Don’t fall into the trap of being liked by many. Stick to your ideals. Dismantle any fakeness that you used to prop up your happiness. Ask yourself, how will you master the courage to be disliked. Don’t doubt your confidence.


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