Detachment is refusing to let our interactions with others define us.

"This principle has been touched on myriad times but I think it's of paramount importance, thus it bears repeating. It is simply too easy to let the actions of others control how we feel about ourselves. Many of us have been falling into this trap since childhood. If she smiles, I must be lovable. If he makes eye contact, I have been noticed. When they frown, I am a failure and worthless. Examples of falling into this trap are endless.

"What others do and what they say does reveal a great deal, that's true. But what do these actions really reveal? My observations, coupled with many years of studying human behavior, tell me that what others do and say reflects what they think of themselves. In other words, when someone scolds you or me, or attempts to, we can choose to define it as a reflection of the kind of day that person is having. Our self-worth need not be injured by the attack. It's equally important, however, not to let our self-worth be tied to the positive reactions of others, either. Our self-worth is a gift from God. Period.

"Let me assure you that it's not easy to let the snarls or the criticisms or the obvious avoidance tactics of others go unnoticed. But responding to them isn't necessary. Even though we may be screaming inside to respond, we can let our desires slide by. We can look on those actions quietly, noting the struggle that he or she must be having, and say a quiet prayer, instead. What a change in behavior this could be, and the real benefit is how much more peaceful we will feel and how much more peaceful the moment will become for all present."

"No one else defines us. No one. God has promised us worthiness. And we need do nothing to deserve it or claim it. This is a principle, a promise that bears frequent repeating."