“When you show yourself to the world and display your talents, you naturally stir all kinds of resentment, envy, and other manifestations of insecurity. You cannot spend your life worrying about the petty feelings of others.”
As the modern world increasingly exposes us to the criticism of others, it’s more important than ever to protect your energy and stay focused on your own actions.
Here are 10 tips for dealing with the haters.
1. Check in with your state of mind.
Our mental state has an enormous correlation with the meaning we assign to a given situation. To help create a positive outcome, ask yourself: What else could this mean? An errant comment mightn’t always be as harsh as it appears. For example, perhaps:
- The sender is battling some difficult things in their own life;
- Their comment (and underlying meaning) was communicated poorly;
- Your initial message was communicated poorly;
- You’re feeling more stressed than you thought and need to take better care of yourself; or
- It’s an opportunity to prove your resilience.
To change your state of mind, get moving. Change your posture, breathing and thinking to align with happiness, love and gratitude—after all, positive motion leads to positive emotion. Avoid or limit your exposure to things that sap your energy.
2. Know who your real friends are.
Napoleon Hill once said, “One of the unappreciated benefits of adversity is that it accelerates the process of identifying your true friends.” If people do not reciprocate your positive energy, take comfort knowing that the quicker they’re out of your life the better.
The world is a big place, yet so many of us cling to friendships that no longer serve us. Channel your energy into supporting those who bring out the best in you, and you in them.
3. Haters gonna hate.
One thing the world will never be short of is opinions. However, criticism and judgement are generally based on the sender’s own insecurities and ego, and it says much more about their character than it does yours. Interestingly, people who support the critics will eventually find out the hard way that those who talk trash on someone will happily do it to everyone.
If someone in your life allows their mind to be possessed with jealousy, envy and resentment, wish them the best and run like the wind.
4. Action / Discard.
The most successful people on the planet actively seek out feedback to help them improve. Tech visionary Elon Musk famously said: “Pay attention to negative feedback and solicit it, particularly from friends. Hardly anyone does that, and it’s incredibly helpful.”
A “congratulations” won’t help you, but a specific tip might. Action what you can then willingly discard the rest.
5. Proof that you stand for something.
Think about the athlete, entrepreneur, musician or politician you look up to the most. Are they immune from criticism? Absolutely not. In fact, those who make the decision to stand for what they believe in attract a whole swarm of haters. On the naysayers, UFC President Dana White said: “No matter how successful you become, one thing never goes away: negativity. Let it fuel you to get up and fight every day.”
If you’re willing to surrender to the critics, you’re not ready for success.
6. Comes with the territory.
Today, almost every post comes with a like, share and comment button. This has given every single person, no matter how ill-informed (e.g. internet trolls), a platform to vent their feelings. Instead, revisit your Success Plan—why do you want to achieve everything you’ve got listed? The clearer and more emotionally invested you are on what you want, the more resilient you’ll be.
Opinions comes with the territory, but as you’ve heard me say before: never EVER let those people who have given up on their dreams talk you out of yours.
7. Stay resolute and focused on your own path.
Too many people go through life wanting to balance the ledger. Yet, all you’re doing is robbing yourself of happiness in the present. As my mum (who continues to prove she’s wise beyond her years) once said after I had been wronged by someone I regarded as a close friend, “It’s not your job to dish out the karma.” She was right.
Stay resolute and focused on your success, and let the universe take care of the rest.
8. Lower your expectations.
Here’s the hard truth: it’s not everyone else’s job to support you, believe in you, or give you a pat on the back when you feel like you deserve it. For new entrepreneurs, especially, it can be a tough realization that—after investing all your time and money in a venture—the overwhelming support you thought you would receive from your social circle disappears as soon as your product/service is available. In fact, most people would rather buy from a celebrity who they don’t know in favor of supporting their friends.
Rather than let it frustrate you, continue to focus on creating more value and you will quickly attract a large audience of people excited in you.
9. Help those less fortunate.
One of the best ways to feel better about yourself is to help those less fortunate—when you see their faces light up, it will give you gratitude and an instant attitude adjustment. I used to do a lot of work mentoring high school students, and I spoke to one of them last week who is now a successful professional in his early 20s. Of course, I’m immensely proud of the life he’s made for himself, but what made me happiest was hearing that he now volunteers at his old high school to help others.
Pay kindness forward, while the haters hold themselves back.
10. Play the long game.
People are typically jealous of short-term success. The best way to prove them wrong is to continually work on your own version of excellence every single day.
Over time, even the most ardent critic can come to appreciate the sustained effort you took to make your mark on the world.
My challenge to you is to be you. Not a discount version, but your best self. Use your actions to win the day, every day. While others gossip, your results will say more than words ever could.
Onwards and upwards always,
In case you missed it: ‘How to Overcome Bad Days’
50 Quotes for Dealing with Haters
“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” – Bernard Baruch
“People will always have an answer for the question they won’t have to answer themselves.” – Conor McGregor
“Throughout life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, cause hate in your heart will consume you too.” – Will Smith
“One of my greatest weaknesses is also one of my greatest strengths: being underestimated.” – Sara Blakely
“Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.” – Jim Rohn
“To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” – Elbert Hubbard
“To be a star, you must shine your own light, follow your own path, and don’t worry about darkness, for that is when the stars shine brightest.” – Napoleon Hill
“Turn your wounds into wisdom.” – Oprah Winfrey
“When another blames you or hates you, or people voice similar criticisms, go to their souls, penetrate inside and see what sort of people they are. You will realize that there is no need to be racked with anxiety that they should hold any particular opinion about you.” – Marcus Aurelius
“When you show yourself to the world and display your talents, you naturally stir all kinds of resentment, envy, and other manifestations of insecurity. You cannot spend your life worrying about the petty feelings of others.” – Robert Greene
“Most haters are stuck in a poisonous mental prison of jealousy and self-doubt that blinds them to their own potentiality.” – Steve Maraboli
“Never take constructive criticism from people who haven’t constructed anything.” – John Shin
“I’ve been all over the world and I’ve never seen a statue of a critic.” – Leonard Bernstein
“Any fool can criticize, complain, and condemn—and most fools do. But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.” – Dale Carnegie
“If anyone can refute me—show me I’m making a mistake or looking at things from the wrong perspective—I’ll gladly change. It’s the truth I’m after, and the truth never harmed anyone. What harms us is to persist in self-deceit and ignorance.” – Marcus Aurelius
“The time you spend hating on someone robs you of your own time. You are literally hating on yourself and you don’t even realize it.” – Joe Rogan
“He who has a why can bear almost any how.” – Friedrich Nietzsche
“Set your mind on a definite goal and observe how quickly the world stands aside to let you pass.” – Napoleon Hill
“Rumors are carried by haters, spread by fools, and accepted by idiots.” – Nishan Panwar
“There will always be haters. And the more you grow the more they hate; the more they hate the more you grow.” – Anthony Liccione
“The purpose of life is finding the largest burden that you can bear and bearing it.” – Jordan Peterson
“Never EVER let someone who gave up on their dreams talk you out of yours.” – James Whittaker
“You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.” – Winston S. Churchill
“Put your foot on the neck of criticism by reaching a decision not to worry about what other people think, do or say.” – Napoleon Hill
“There will be haters, there will be doubters, there will be non-believers, and then there will be you proving them wrong.” – Jennifer Van Allen
“Compare yourself to who you were yesterday, not to who someone else is today.” – Jordan Peterson
“It never ceases to amaze me: we all love ourselves more than other people, but care more about their opinion than our own.” – Marcus Aurelius
“I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.” – Booker T. Washington
“The best way to counter-attack a hater is to make it blatantly obvious that their attack has had no impact on you.” – Tim Ferriss
“Action is the real measure of intelligence.” – Napoleon Hill
“A critic is a legless man who teaches other people to run.” – Channing Pollock
“I don’t worry about the haters. They are just angry because the truth I speak contradicts the lie they live.” – Steve Maraboli
“It’s easy to attack and destroy an act of creation. It’s a lot more difficult to perform one.” – Chuck Palahniuk
“Don’t wish it was easier, wish you were better. Don’t wish for less problems, wish for more skills. Don’t wish for less challenges, wish for more wisdom.” – Jim Rohn
“Set your house in perfect order before you criticize the world.” – Jordan Peterson
“Haters are all failures. It’s 100% across the board. No one who is truly brilliant at anything is a hater.” – Joe Rogan
“Learn to use the criticism as fuel and you will never run out of energy.” – Orrin Woodward
“When you are able to maintain your own highest standards of integrity—regardless of what others may do—you are destined for greatness.” – Napoleon Hill
“People work better when they know what the goal is and why.” – Elon Musk
“I was born to make mistakes, not to fake perfection.” – Drake
“My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me.” – Henry Ford
“Breathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.” – Oprah Winfrey
“I don’t have time, energy, or interest in hating the haters; I’m too busy loving the lovers.” – Steve Maraboli
“No matter how successful you become, one thing never goes away: negativity. Let it fuel you to get up and fight every day.” – Dana White
“The only thing more frustrating than slanderers is those foolish enough to listen to them.” – Chris Jammi
“He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help.” – Abraham Lincoln
“Don’t believe me? Just watch.” – Bruno Mars
“Haters don’t really hate you, they hate themselves; because you’re a reflection of what they wish to be.” – Yaira N. Juan
“We must all wage an intense, lifelong battle against the constant downward pull. If we relax, the bugs and weeds of negativity will move into the garden and take away everything of value.” – Jim Rohn
“The more successful you become, the more haters you get.” – Daymond John
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