how to stop being an asshole

How to Stop Being an Asshole by Changing your Perception

Our topic? How to stop being an asshole.

It may be dawning on you that you’re no Mother Theresa. And you don’t want to be, right? You would just like to stop being a total asshole. 

Congrats on your honesty, by the way.

It’s your negative views that make you an asshole. Or limiting beliefs. Let’s work through the issue together and come out the other side in a kinder, gentler frame of mind.

Describe the Adversity that Makes you Want to Know How to Stop Being an Asshole

I want to stop being an asshole. However, it’s hard. Being a jerk – looking down on people, yelling at them – seeing others as obstacles in my way or completing dismissing them as irrelevant. I don’t treat others as I want to be treated. I’m a jerk. 

Case in point: My step-son. I can barely tolerate being in the same room with him. I see him as some sort of degenerate sub creature that I’m not sure I can endure much longer. This is an exaggerated perception of the situation that adds up to nothing less than self-sabotage for me.

Yet, I honestly feel that’s true. I see him that way. This is asshole territory, is it not? How to stop being an asshole? IDK

Identify the Limiting Belief

What must be true in order for me to see my stepson in this light and treat him poorly? Let me brainstorm ideas about what I must believe, given my perspective and behavior. 

Why is it so hard for me to stop being an asshole? Do I not see it? No….I see it. I know when I’m being one. I must believe being an asshole is justified somehow. I may never stop being an asshole, but people deserve it. Do I believe people deserve to be treated poorly?

  • I don’t have the time or energy to care for others
  • People suck
  • If I stopped being an asshole, it would make zero difference as the world is full of assholes

No, no. What MUST be true in order for me to so consistently see my stepson as less than and act like a jerk toward him? It’s how he makes me feel…..which is defined by how I see him! How do I see him?

As a lost cause. But a lost cause that demands resources that I resentfully provide. This is it! Who wouldn’t resent feeling compelled to spend time and money (a lot of it) on a total lost cause? What a waste, right? 

What are the Consequences of the belief?

Believing my stepson is an expensive lost cause and needing to learn how to stop being an asshole are one and the same issue.

See him as a lost cause that pointlessly drains family resources creates RESENTMENT within me. Wow. I am creating the resentment because it begins with how I perceive the situation. If I see through my belief that he’s a lost cause and then need to pay for his college, that creates resentment. It began with how I was seeing him as a lost cause. 

The stressful feelings I do not like carrying around every single day are the direct result of viewing my stepson as a lost cause. 

Dispute the Belief

No, he’s not a lost cause. This kid is not an utter waste of life. He exists for the same reason anyone exists. The reason itself is irrelevant because we’re all on an equal footing regardless. He’s not a lost cause. I do not know what he is – what his purpose might be or what good he might do in the world. 

Seeing him as a lost cause is essentially claiming to know the purpose (or lack thereof) of anyone’s life, I am not even very sure of my own life purpose!

Energize – Take Action 

Whenever I feel resentful I will stop and recognize that I can learn how to stop being an asshole if I realize that how I am seeing him is the root cause of the issue. It’s not him. The cause is my perception of him, which he has less to do with than I imagine. 

About the Author

Andrea Reyes