Emotional hurt. “I never understood how some people can be so hurtful to the ones they were closest to,” is a comment I read recently.

It really does not matter if the person hurting you is at work or outside of work. The dynamics are the same.

The truth is if you feel hurt by someone, it is because you have made some level of investment in the relationship. If the relationship is going along well, you feel great, if someone stumbles, you feel the pain. Yes, it is a sign that you care.

Do you wonder how the same action or comment affects people differently? One person may be hurt, while another person does not even pay attention to it.

Could it be that people who do not let it bother them – just do not care enough to let it affect them? It is hard to hurt someone who does not care about your actions and opinions.

Can you emotionally hurt someone who you are not close to? It is less likely to happen, if both parties do not care about each other.

There are situations where the other person may not realize they are doing something that is hurtful.

Consider this, if there is a disconnect with two people – one person feels hurt and other does not realize it, then one of these conditions may exist:

  • someone is not strongly tied to the success of the pair
  • one person has more investment in the relationship than the other person
  • one party is oblivious to being hurtful
  • someone is intentionally hurting the other person because they know they can
  • sometimes we do dumb things because we are human

Think about situations, conditions and implications for how people can hurt you.

Next, think about how you may have hurt others. Remember to consider your work and personal life. When things fell apart, can you relate it to one of these conditions?

Bottom line: You can really only be hurt by people who you care about – regardless if they care about you.