As your blog continues to grow, there will likely come a point where someone says something mean. Without a doubt, this is one of the least fun parts about blogging, but a real issue that we’ll all have to deal with at some point. Whether it’s a comment on your blog, a social platform or on GOMI (particularly hilarious to me – get off my internets – umm, didn’t you come to my site?), it’s bound to happen and when it does, I hope that this post has you feeling more prepared instead of feeling completely defeated (because it’s easy to feel that way too).
The negativity and rude comments remind me of all the bullying campaigns for elementary and high school kids. Adult bullying is apparently a thing too and it’s pretty pathetic. Just because you have an opinion doesn’t always mean you need to share it.
I will never understand why people think it’s okay to rip on someone they’ve never met while hiding behing their private profile (come out you cowards!). You’d never say something so horrible to a stranger walking down the street, so why do so many people continue to do it? I also understand that as bloggers we’re putting ourselves out there for the world to judge, but I always stick always to the golden rule — if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.
I’ll never know what goes through someone’s head before they hit that ‘Submit’ button, but what I do know is those people suck and don’t have a place in my life.
The crazy thing to me is how powerful negativity can be. For example, let’s say get 15 comments one day (woo hoo!). Fourteen of them are friendly, complimentary and engaging, but then there’s one comment that doesn’t fit in with the rest — ‘You’re Ugly.’ Chances are you suddenly forget how great you felt about those other fourteen comments and have fixated on the single harsh one. I get it. I’ve been there too and it’s hard to not get hung up on the mean one.
What I’ve found, is that dealing with negativity is tough, but like any obstacle, it’s something you learn to deal with and find ways of not letting it ruin your day. No matter how nice you are, there are always going to be haters, so let’s talk about not getting hung up on those mean remarks!
1. Don’t Take Things Personally
This one is tough, no doubt, but seriously, if you’re going to put your life out there on the internet, you’re going to have to toughen up a bit. People can be jerks and you’re never going to please everyone. So instead of feeling bad about your ‘yellow teeth’ or ‘fat legs’ (or whatever stupid comment people have left), sit back, laugh a bit and remind yourself that you’re beautiful and talented and things that like this can’t crush you, but instead make you stronger.
2. Take the High Road
Don’t respond hatefully to a hateful message. I don’t see it all that often, but when I do, I cringe. All that does is give them the power and more of a reason to talk about you in a negative light. Take the high road, be mature and just accept it for what it is and move on.
3. It’s Your Blog
Probably one of the best pieces of advice I heard about negativity was from Garance Doré at Alt Summit a few years ago. She reminded everyone that YOU own your site and YOU decide what goes on there. If you don’t like what someone wrote, feel free to delete it. If they give you grief, tell them that negativity is simply not permitted on your site and that’s why it was removed. Personally, if a comment provides constructive criticism, I’m okay with it, but if it’s a flat out jab at me or someone in my life, it’s gone.
There are always people out there who are ready to try and crush your spirit by sharing their rude and unwanted opinion. Nearly every blogger I know has experienced this and unfortauntely it seems to be part of the road to success. It seems that the better a blogger is doing, the more people have negative things to say.
Lastly, a quick word of encouragement! Be kind to your fellow bloggers, interact and engage with them positively to remind others that’s how they should behave in this space. Your words are a direct reflection of who you are, so leave something kind!