Getting Offended Is A Choice- Know Your Inner Strength

There are choices in life. I have been a proponent of saying this to myself and to others for many years. It is difficult to hear when someone says it back to me in the middle of an emotional meltdown of my own. Almost offensive to me.

Getting Offended Is A Choice- Know Your Inner Strength

This caused me to ponder about feeling offended, was I able to control this perception? The answer is yes.

Being a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, I spend lots of time with clients hearing, seeing, and feeling patterns created by our personal life stories and experiences.

By using my knowledge of training to assist with sorting it all out looking for a common thread that usually is the root cause of many issues.

It all depends on our filters, perceptions, and beliefs about how we see ourselves, and the world around us, something Neuro-Linguistic Programming does well for others.

So, why then is it hard for me to get past this “nerve” that someone hit in my psyche the other day that I had long thought was dealt with and discarded? Come on this journey with me. It just might give you some insight into your own life way.

“The feeling of being offended is a warning indicator that is showing you where to look within yourself for unresolved issues.” ~ Bryant McGill

Looking Within


As I ponder and reflect on my life on this planet for all the years I have gained insight, I am searching for the incidents of offense, and looking also to how I may have responded to them.

Every action if you believe in physics and the law of the universe is to have a reaction. With the study of energy somatically there must be an outlet or a release.

Something we get when we feel angry, or insulted, offended. It’s in the why and the how that I arrive at the destination that matters. Energy spins around attached to a thought, or experience and has memory.


*All individuals are unique. Your results can and will vary.

Our body has its own neurological system. If one can imagine that conscious mind being the logical source, the subconscious and being a file cabinet of life experiences and the body for action to follow the result equals a total unique human being.

It is logical part of the mind that sometimes feels as if it has been able to get past some issues, but if they are still in the filing cabinet labeled “offended” we will quickly remember how to react to any situation that even slightly resembles the experiences we have had that led us to feeling offended.

Have you ever felt like you got past something, but once triggered it was easy to feel the energy build in the pit of your stomach, chest or other area wanting to release? Energy must find release.

One can reason that for some physical activity releases the flow. Another entire article that I will write on soon!

I started combing through the types of offenses I have experienced to look for a common thread about how I relate to them. Yup, there it was.

I found that I started to rise up my defense mode anytime that I felt my self-worth, or my values being compromised. How I chose to handle it was to feel like I was deeply offended.

In a sense, I was choosing to give back all of the power to the offender.

Here is where I had to do some internal file cabinet cleaning. (the subconscious) There are times after all, that feeling offended was and should remain as a healthy choice.

I should feel that way. It was an uncomfortable event. What really matters is that in the choice to feeling offended, I was really uncomfortable.

Even after the event, I wallowed. I could not hide. I tried to stuff it, but it then would return to enter my day. I vacillated between anger, hurt, indignation, and wanted to retreat.

If I even thought about the event it would all flood back as though it were happening to me now, even though life itself had moved on.


*All individuals are unique. Your results can and will vary.

So, what really happens here, and how is this understood so that we are able to move on without trying to force the repair of emotional tide?

The Process

The Process

Decide what is really going on. Understand that being offended is a reaction, and possibly a choice we go to. Our thoughts are unique. How we experience them and engage with them also unique. Let’s look at the process.


We attach a value to ourselves that helps us to identify the who we are and desire to be. Also known as our ego.

So if someone says we are being mean, we take offense because we have chosen to identify ourselves as anything but mean. We are kind, loving and generous.

However if someone says, “You suck at being an artist” it doesn’t hurt us at all! It just does not resonate or challenge our belief. Sounds simple enough, right? The attachment to our persona is not challenged.

Feeling worthy is not something we find in the external world. It is indeed something we have chosen to believe about ourselves that is inside us.

We have connected it to our very being. Truthfully though, we are not our persona. We are not our ego. It is an internal value that we hold dearly without a doubt.

We simply connect to it. It is important, and we protect it. What we have to remember is that while it is ours it is possible it is not that of the offender’s value system at all.

Giving Power Away To Others

Sometimes we choose to just allow someone to offend us easily! You walk into a public place.
You do not know anyone personally that is there, but you choose to be offended by the awful language and slurs someone is blurting out for others to hear.

Yes, it’s their fault. How do you feel? Chances are pretty offended, insulted, and maybe even a little bit angry. They do not even know you, but you choose to judge them and be offended.

Would it help to shout back? Will they apologize? Most likely it may start to involve you if you do. No, they will likely not apologize, so you sit and choose to wallow in the insensitivity and allow it to spoil your evening.

Giving Power Away To Others

We can never see someone else’s opinions it’s on them. In their world, they may have gotten fired from a job, or someone offended them and they are letting the world know about it.

Correct for them to ask others to become a part? No, they could not be further from right. However, it is their issue. So with day to day issues, the world they live in is their own.

You don’t have to get involved in the outburst. It wasn’t about you. It was their opinion.

Yes, they should have had some concern and caring about whom in their nearby world they may be offending, but what good would it do to confront someone that is angry and indignant?


*All individuals are unique. Your results can and will vary.

Coming from a place of strength and courage, it’s empowering to choose a perspective that we can live with.
It is not a personal assault, just a spiteful derogatory comment grounded in their phobias of race, sexuality, or fear based somehow tied to their life.

Is not responding and taking the high road weak? Or condoning the offender’s behavior? No, just the opposite. We are not responsible for them. We do have control over our reaction.

Sometimes simply being a part of the human experience is feeling offended by someone that is near. That’s okay. You will feel empowered when you realize that you can choose to feel and lean towards your innate sense of self and well- being.

Choosing to feel worthy, empowers us to be able to move past behaviors that others choose to inflict, feels somehow content, and relaxed, while a sense of safe returns.

Learning to move on, and realize the insensitivities of others opinions and behaviors does not need to internalize. This extends a sense of universal acceptance to be practiced and realized.

Unconditional human love allows personal freedom of choice in whether or not the role of offense is allowed to become a part of your internal experience or not.

When we are able to sort this out, we will find our inner strength to be that of knowing that you are enough, you feel comfortable accepting yourself without judgment, just as you are. You always have a choice. No one can make you feel offended.

You simply choose not to allow an untruth to enter. Choosing how you respond and wallow is up to you. Thinking it through and realize if the frustration is worth your time.

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Learning to release the energy that is attached to the thought is an easy decision. Let it go, and really do just that.

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Davidene Bender-Main, MNLP, MBCT, CBT, HT, LC

Davidene Bender-Main is a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming serving others by working with clients on specifically ta

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