You walk into the room and finds your friends arguing over something. You have no clue what exactly is causing this fight, but then, they were your friends. You had to do something, at least, say something.
It was not as if anyone pressured you to speak but you felt this inner desire to intervene. So you stepped in and told one of them to let go of the argument and admit the fault. Well, that's some wound wisdom there. Everyone knows that's the best thing to do when an argument gets too heated like that. But what happened next would cause some chills of shame to run down your spine.
Your friend, whom you told to let go of the issue and end the intense debate opened her mouth and uttered the words, "mind your own business". Just a four-word phrase but when used at the exact right moment can hit so hard that you may vow never to meddle with anyone else' matter anymore.
Mind your own business is a phrase used for someone when it seems they are intruding or meddling in someone else' personal matters. It is more commonly used when a third party (like I described in the opening) tries to come in between two or more people in a conflict, although it can also be used when only two people are involved.
Why do people use the phrase, mind your own business?
I know you may want to know why people use the phrase mind your own business, don't you? People say mind your own business when they personally feel you are invading their social privacy. But it does not always mean that you are actually invading their privacy. There are so many things you would be expected to do for a friend, there are great miles friends can go for each other, and there are certain decisions friends can make for the safety of the other. But some of these actions and decisions may not always go well for the person you are making them for.
The feeling that you are being too controlled is one major factor that may influence why you might tell someone to mind their business. You just don't want anyone to make each and every decision for you. You just want to be free to do what you want, even if it may be wrong.
Another factor that may make someone use the words, mind your own business, on you is if they think that you are being biased in your judgment between them and someone else.
The story I started with could illustrate what I mean by this. It is possible that when you walked into the room, you demonstrated that you were on the side of the other person in the argument. It could also mean that you have always been making judgments that seems like you are against one person over the other. And so, the person who had told you to mind your own business felt you were not an unbiased judge over the matter. Hence, they simply tell you to mind your own business and stay of theirs.
Is there any group of people who use the phrase more?
Great question! And holy yes, there are some categories of persons who may use the phrase more. Check this list to see if you belong to any of the groups. I have already given some reasons why these groups of people may be more likely to use the phrase mind your own business.
1. It is likely to be more commonly used among ladies or girls, than in boys.
2. Adolescents are more like to tell someone to mind their business than older people.
3. Someone who has been repeatedly abused or oppressed is more likely to say mind your own business than someone who has been fairly treated.
4. People who have an inferiority complex.
5. People who think you are spying on them.
6. People who prefer to be alone.
Is it wrong not to mind your own business?
Everyone meddles in other people's businesses once in a while, sometimes, with their interest at heart. It is part of life to think about how to help other people around you. However, even the purest intentions could become unpleasant to that person you truly want to help.
Asking if is it wrong to mind your own business, is like asking if it is wrong to help someone out. Everyone is required by morals to help a friend, brother or sister in need. But this help must be what they consent about. If you go out of the way to render help to someone out of your pure intentions, there is nothing wrong with that. But if the person you are trying to help thinks you should leave them alone, why should you resist them to it? Except if the individual is your child, and he/she is still at an age when they are not legally permitted to make decisions, at that point, you should mind your own business and leave them to whatever outcome their actions or inactions would produce.
How To Know You Are Not Minding Your Own Business Enough
- When the person starts avoiding you
- When the person prefers to handle issues on their own even when they know you could help
- When the person actually raises their voice to confront you
- When they have mentioned the words, mind your own business or in any other form
- When you find yourself thinking too much about someone else' issues than about yours
Minding your own business may not be such a difficult thing to many people. However, some people have become so empathic and concerned about other people that they might find it hard to avoid meddling in other people's business no matter how hard they tell them to stop.
If someone is very caring but also meddles in another person's business, and then they stop being so all of a sudden, it may appear as though there is an ongoing issue in their relationship with each other. This can affect someone who wants to stop meddling in other people's business and make him/her not be able to do so. In this last section, you will find ways to safely mind your own business without making anyone or yourself feel bad for doing so.
How To Mind Your Own Business
Minding your own business begins with you realizing that whatever you are doing for someone, be it out of good intentions or not, is no more welcome by them. At that point, you really need to stop. Here are some things to do to focus more on yourself and less on other people.
- Accept that they are in charge of their own life and will not share the outcomes with you.
- Recognize that you need more time for yourself than for them
- Tell yourself that they do not deserve that amount of attention from you
- Set and focus on your own personal goals and projects
- Think about your own tasks and how to fulfil them
- Move to someone else who is willing to take your words and advice
- Talk less when you are with them
- Reply to them when they ask you a question
- Don't give them any appearance that you are in conflict with them
- If they do something that might affect you negatively, express yourself. Don't be their slave!