How To Rebuild A Bad Reputation

Maybe you've made some bad choices, and the gossipers are now using them against you. Our reputation can be harmed when we make poor choices at work or school, or when we hurt others in our relationships.

Perhaps you struggle with the same relationship problems over and over, or you keep falling back into harmful or addictive behaviors. All that has an impact on your reputation.

Or maybe someone is making up lies about you, simply trying to hurt you.

Gossiping is such a popular way for people to spend their time, and tragically, the damage it can do spreads like a virus, until someone's reputation is seriously damaged.

You may feel like there's no chance to counteract the horrible things they are saying. It's going to take some time, but trust me, the good news is, you can rebuild your reputation and you can recover.

Here are some ideas on how to do it:

Ignore the Negative

It is very important to stop listening to all the bad things being said about you it will only bring you down and leave you feeling discouraged and hopeless.

That was Sarah's experience: I was driving myself crazy, listening or even trying to imagine what other people were saying about me. I had to stop. Then I could finally move on.

Plan out your Future Self

Figure out what kind of person you want to be, and then work on showing that to other people. You're well aware of how you don't want people to view you. How do you want them to view you? And why?

Find a Friend you can Confide in

Find one other person you can talk to who will remind you of the person you want to be and believes the best about you. If you can't find anyone, be that person for yourself.

Are your friends adding to, or taking away, from your reputation?

Devon commented: Until I could find a good friend, I had to keep telling myself over and over I am not the person they say I am. I'm a good person and though I'm not perfect, I'm working on getting better.

Be Honest about your Mistakes

If the source of the gossip is rooted in truth, let people (especially the people you care about the most) know what is true, but that you want to change. Then, over time, go about proving it to them!
Time will usually heal a lot of difficult situations.

A New Group of Friends?

Figure out if you need a new group of friends.  Are your friends adding value to, or taking away, from your reputation? If they are affecting your reputation in a negative way, you don't have to neglect, or start talking badly about them, but you might want to add some new people into your life people who are known to say encouraging and positive things.

Misty said: I found out from another friend that the people I was hanging out with were only hurting my reputation. I still care about them, but I need to be careful about what influence they might be having on me.

Show you care about Other People

Smile, and be nice to people you see. Take a genuine interest in what other people are doing or thinking. People always appreciate someone who seems to care. You'll find that people will be drawn to you, and less likely to talk badly about you.

Simply being nice to others gives you a chance to feel good about yourself, win new friends, and allow existing acquaintances to, eventually, reconsider their thoughts about you.

Make a little change

Sometimes changing something as simple as your hairstyle or your clothes will make a ton of difference in how people view you. Be creative, and don't be afraid to conform just a little bit to what seems to be the current looks.

Don't ever try to turn into something you are not!

Be patient

It takes time to build a good reputation. And even more time to rebuild a damaged one. In time, the truth about you will be known. A good reputation is hard to destroy. Who you are as a person speaks for itself. Besides, sometimes people go on with their own lives, and forget what was said about you.

David had this experience: I had people saying bad things about me. But after a while, people just kind of forgot about it. You just have to be patient and stay confident.

An additional tip to help you rebuild your reputation

If you're feeling like you need to rebuild your reputation, ask your close friends or family what they see to be your positive or negative traits. What do they think would be beneficial for you to adjust, in order to help improve your reputation?

No matter what you do to rebuild your reputation, don't ever try to turn into something you are not. Just remember to be true to yourself, and honest to your closest friends. As you seek to live the best life you can, you will be able to hold your head held high no matter what other people say about you.

Rebuild a bad reputation also by working on your self-esteem. It's possible to change what you and others think about you.

Start Your Hope Journey Now!
Step 1:  Choose a topic
Step 2: Explore our resources
Step 3: Chat with a hope coach

More Like This

Subscribe Now

Opt-In for Texts(Required)

We will not share your information and we will only send you stuff that matters!
Quick Links

87 comments on “How To Rebuild A Bad Reputation”

  1. You actually make it appear really easy together with your presentation however I find this matter to be really one thing which
    I think I might never understand. It sort of feels too complex and
    very vast for me. I am looking forward in your next submit, I will attempt to get the hold of it!

  2. I'm a teacher and yesterday I was called in to speak with my boss because a parent made a complaint about me. The parent (whom I don't know) said she overheard me talking to another teacher in the hallway and that I made a rude remark about the principal. The parent was scheduled to come up to meet w/ the principal about the matter, but at this time I have no idea what he or she heard and neither does the other teacher.
    I apologized in person and in writing to the principal and he seemed to be ok with it, but I feel like I'm going to lose my mind.
    The principal and I get along very well and until now, I've had an excellent reputation at work.
    I feel as though one stupid mistake on my part has ruined my reputation. We may still get along, and hopefully there will be no further action taken, but I feel terrible. I keep thinking of the saying "you can't un ring the bell."
    If I didn't have kids to raise I think I would just like to go to sleep and never wake up.

  3. Based on reading this, I've seen that at 21, alot of my rep being 'unpopular' has been my fault. I've already had a difficult time in life because of how shy I've been socially. I've also never really had life moreso going out-experiencing things with family.
    Alot of my life has been 'trying to fit in with other people and follow what they do to fit in' type of thing. Its left me frustrated for a while being pushed away. It's been lonesome.
    Not just that. I've practically had life hit me verrry late. I feel because of now, I'm having trouble establishing a fun social circle. I have a couple of friends whom have helped me for which I thank very much, but we dont get to hangout very much now doing wild things, learning.
    I'm currently in school, working two part time jobs so life has been better in the present, but being driven now to push myself outta my comfort zone with things has been the most difficult thing right now in a mans life like mine.
    I look to really improve my life still and forward, but I still get shy. I've missed out alot of probably what men my age are either experiencing, or have accomplished by now.
    What can I do to really break free of this way of shyness? What are great places to genuinely make pals with like-minded people who like me, are trying to also have fun and get life together. I'm trying to bri g a valuable personality to be a fun, kind, (tough-love) type of person, so I have that goal in my mindset as an individual.
    Sincerely, Mo

    1. Mo, It's good you are making an effort to push yourself to overcome your shyness. That is a great start. That is very hard to do and we are proud of you for realizing you need to do this. We have an eBook that may help you on making and keeping friends. It is full of ideas and solutions that may help you as you try to establish your social circle. It's free. You can download it here: We sincerely hope this helps and encourage you to not get disappointed as you put yourself out there. Finding a circle of friends that accept you for who you are will ultimately be your best choices in friends.

  4. I messed up my reputation in middle school by making a sexual joke. People won't drop it and I'm going insane. They keep calling me a pervert because of one joke.
    I regret it so much. I want to die and forget this.

    1. We know this is hard. You will get through this! Please give it time. It seems like it will never will end. If you want to talk about this more, you can chat with one of our HopeCoaches at every night from 7 pm to 12 am Central.
      If you need someone to talk to right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1.800.273.8255 or chat online with them at You can reach the Crisis Text Line 24/7 by texting “START” to 741-741 too.
      Here is a list of additional suicide prevention resources

    2. This past year, inappropriate use of social media on my part has damaged my reputation and labeled me as a slut. I know I am not one, and that’s my choices have negatively affected me. Now I just need to rebuild myself and focus on the positive qualities about myself. My self-esteem has shot down because of all this, and I regret a lot of things. I’ve developed a bitterness towards myself that’s going to be really difficult for me to fix, but I am determined to fix it and prove I am better than I have been.

  5. Im suffering from severe depression caused by coworkers who maligned me and ruined my reputation to push me out of the job. They are successful. The problem is gossip spreads like virus eventhough it is not true , people always believe the gossip especially since my supervisors did not defend me and in fact ruined me to save their jobs by putting blame on me. I fought back in my current job but it backfired. When people gang up on you andyou are alone with no one to defend you. It is very hard. How
    To get over when everyone believes the lie?

    1. The first thing , you should do is not let people see how much the gossip affects you. Project confidence and calm , even if you don't feel it , and don't ever feel the need to bow down or please people in an effort to get people to like you. Instead work hard and excel. Once people see your strength they will put all gossip behind them and respect you for the person you are.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Tired of The Problem?  Try the Solution.

Privacy Policy / Terms of Use
© 2022 TheHopeLine, Inc. Registered 501(c)(3). EIN: 20-1198064
© 2021 Powered by OxyNinja Core