Figuring out how to deal with haters is really tough. No matter how hard you try to bend, accommodate, please, and mind your own business, there will always be people who don’t like you.
Some may tell you to your face. Others will show you through their actions. These people use the level to which they can manipulate and control your emotional weather as a temporary bandage for the cancer of their own insecurities.
You could be dedicating your life to the most worthy, selfless cause and there will still be people who:
- Undermine you.
- Hate you.
- Make fun of you.
- Gossip about you.
- Backstab you.
- Attempt to tear you down you.
These people will steal from and stalk you WHILE they criticize/”critique” what you do. They will stop at nothing to destroy you and your reputation – no matter how well you know them, don’t know them, or how loyal you’ve been to them.
Other times, hate will come in the form of a joke:
“Oh, I was just joking!”
“Whoa. Natasha. You CLEARLY can’t take a joke.”
Of course, you were joking. As long as you’re “joking,” you can be a complete piece of sh*t while wearing the cloak of “comedian-that-no-one-thinks-is-funny-besides-the-people-who-are-afraid-of-being-the-next-cheap-punchline.” You can be as a*sholic, brutal, and below-the-belt immature as you want to be because you guessed it… it’s just a joke. Right? You were joking. And if I, for some insanely illogical reason don’t think you’re funny, I’m the overly sensitive moron who can’t take a joke.
If you leave yourself open at all on social media (or online in general), people who you can’t even see and who you don’t even know will throw shade and spew hate at you. They’ll act like they know more about you, your life and your loved ones than you do.
Every day, I see people being their authentic selves online (which is really nice to come by in an area where you have the most control as far as manipulating your image goes).
These people are interesting. They have really cool opinions, are honest, vulnerable, and agenda-less with the exception of servitude.
And that’s about all it takes for haters to show up.
It’s hard to know how to deal with haters.
A hater doesn’t have to be some anonymous person in the woods of cyberspace or someone who you don’t personally know. A hater can be anyone – a family member, friend, co-worker, boss, teacher… even the person you’re dating (or their family, friends, ex, etc). These people can also be very passive agressive, competitive, and mixed signaled in their hate.
You could have a long history with this person. You could have been good to, generous with, and trusting of them.
And then one day… they turn.
We’ve all experienced this at one point or another.
What I’ve learned from it all is that no matter what you do, there will always be people who have an allergic reaction to you and your accomplishments. They’ll then blame you for somehow creating that allergy.
And you HAVE TO know how to deal with these people or it will rob you. BIG time. Just like it robbed me – of my time (that I’ll never get back) and my health (that I am still working toward rebuilding). I also try to forgive myself for the times that I’ve acted on my own emotional allergies ignited by the insecurity that other people’s accomplishments, beauty, life, being, etc., triggered in me.
Knowing how to deal with haters is one thing. Actually APPLYING this is something that I still have to work on each and every day. It’s hard. Sometimes I can’t apply any of it. Most of the time I don’t want to.
Little by little though, I do it and in the process, I build self-respect. I then start to see results in my life because I’m no longer a paranoid emotional accountant – I’m an unbothered, unf*ckwithable force who is more anxious to get to the light at the end of the tunnel than cry/claim blind from the temporary shade thrown by any hater in the tunnel.
Here is everything you need to know about how to deal with haters, jealousy, and toxicity.
One thing that amazes me every day is that at a time where it’s easier than ever to anonymously hate, be overly offended, abusive, and jump to conclusions – compared to other writers, bloggers, and colleagues I know, the amount of hate I get is insanely low. No more than a handful in the last three years.
I’m sure that as my business grows, there will be more haters. Not because I’ll change as a person at all, but because they’ll simply be more to hate. The field will be larger. And that’s okay. It used to really scare me, but I’ve finally gotten to a point that no matter what happens…
Nothing permeates to the point of paralysis for me anymore.
And when you become your own Teflon manufacturer, it’s not that you don’t ever get paranoid or that things don’t ever hurt (whenever I receive any kind of hate, it hurts. Sometimes I cry), but it just no longer ABSORBS to the point that my ability to take action is disabled.
And as long as you can take action, no one can f*ck with you.
I’ve said it before – No one has ever f*cked with me more than I’ve f*cked with myself.
F*cking with yourself is NOT about getting hurt by haters – that’s called having a human reaction to an inhumane set of circumstances.
F*cking with yourself is when you let the hate define you; when you let it take you down.
Most of the time, we are in our own head about haters. We establish them before they even show up.
No matter how many colleagues of mine tell me that I’m crazy to give as much as I do away for free, I still worry about looking like a sell-out when I do charge for the material I’m creating. I’m able to see the ridiculousness of it pretty quickly, but I still worry every now and then.
James Altucher just wrote an amazing post about this and how to deal with trolls/how to deal with haters. In it, he discusses how he used these obnoxious looking ads to educate people on a subject that he knows a lot about. He obviously charged for this, but he has also given/gives so much away for free.
In regard to the ads that brought out a lot of haters, he says that there’s a real flip side to it:
“Now I have more readers who are not only reading my current advice but looking through my years of articles on all sorts of topics. Listening to my podcasts that I created out of love. Reading thousands of free articles on my site.
Some people asked, reasonably, “Did you sell out?”
But as Tony Hawk once told me, “You can only sell out if you are selling.”
And should Richard Branson give away free plane tickets just because he’s a billionaire?
Don’t have a poverty complex.
When you create something of value, don’t forget that you become a person of value. It’s ok to charge for that.
And yet, 99.999% of what I do is for free. Read my 2200+ articles or 400 podcast episodes.
I spill my whole life for free. It’s ugly and bloody.”
“When you create something of value, don’t forget that you become a person of value. It’s ok to charge for that.” This hit me hard.
If you think about it – you already ARE a person of value because you’re YOU. And it’s okay to “charge” (aka have boundaries, limits, and standards), for recognizing, owning, and acknowledging the UNIQUE value that only YOU can bring to the table.
How To Deal With Haters:
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: It’s never about you but it always is.
What anyone says or does to you – good or bad – is a window into THEIR state of being. It’s never a magnifying glass over yours. This is about them, not you. What is about you is the level to which you believe them. If someone came up to me and said I had an ugly mustache, I wouldn’t run to the nearest mirror. I would think they were nuts. However, if there was even the smallest part of me that believed I may have just ONE little hair on my upper lip, I’d check it out right away. Bottom line: What people do and say is about THEM, what infiltrates is about YOU and your triggers. Remember: No one can activate a belief system that you aren’t breathing life into on the daily.
Want to disable the effect a hater has on you? Take a hard look at what really gets to you and why. Then, aim to rewire that belief system.
The only way to rewire is to replace the belief with concerted and consistent patterns (which are made up of actions) that negate it.
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: Know how to respond.
Reactivity is the easiest way to show how bothered you are and how malleable your belief system is in regard to yourself. Responding is rooted in action and the denominator of action is power.
When in doubt, respond in silence and FLUSH.
I love when people challenge, disagree with me and are constructive in their criticism. When people are abusive, hateful, obnoxious and divisive, however, I just flush – literally if needed (by hitting the delete button), and always psychologically.
I will never surround myself with “yes!” people, but I don’t engage with or give any energy or time to people who bring me down, are toxic, and not good for me.
If it’s someone who I have to see on a daily basis for whatever reason, I don’t engage with them. I let them do their thing and I avoid making any further investments because the payout has proven to be nowhere near what I invested.
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: Surrender.
Surrender to the fact that you’ll never know exactly why they did what they did and even if you knew, it still wouldn’t matter because they DID IT.
Knowing why someone committed murder is helpful, yes, but that knowingness will never resurrect the body on the floor.
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: Know what drives haters.
Elie Weisel once said: “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.” When people hate, are jealous, and spew toxicity, it’s because they are scared. And they are projecting that fear onto you in a hateful way. Scared people scare people just like hurt people hurt people.
The only temporary pacifier to their permanent fear is proving to themselves that they can incite fear and inadequacy in the one person who incites fear and inadequacy in them (for whatever reason): YOU.
This is why actions, limits, accomplishments, boundaries, successes, achievements, etc., can attract haters. They mirror a reflection that these people can’t stand to look at.
Deflection thus becomes a very cheap and pathetic way of life.
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: My two favorite questions.
Ask yourself, “What would I do if I was running a business and this happened? How would I, as C.E.O, respond?” (Remember, you are the C.E.O. OF Y.O.U).
Think about if you were watching this (your life) in a movie theater. Ask yourself, “HOW would I be rooting for the main character to respond?” Trust me when I say, you wouldn’t be rooting for a reaction.
In the movie Taken, no one ever rooted for Liam Neeson to react to the kidnappers who had his daughter. Reactivity shows a lack of control. The audience was too busy watching Neeson take action. He was a dynamic character. Dynamic characters are the most interesting to watch, the most enviable, and the most emulated because they do the one thing 99.9% of people can’t…
They act in situations where anyone would normally react.
- HOW TO DEAL WITH HATERS: Monitor your fetish. Mine used to be out of control.
I used to fetishize haters. It’s like I needed haters to jump-start my own productivity.
If I didn’t have an opposition to prove wrong, I wasn’t motivated.
While it’s healthy to turn hate/jealousy/toxicity/shade into motivation, you should never need it to take action.
The oxygen to my productivity is no longer an opposing force, it’s awareness. I’m aware that I have a terminal condition called life and as far as I know, I’m not going to survive it.
You only have one. Don’t waste it on subscribing to the belief that anyone knows you better than YOU.
Written by: Natasha Adamo