In life, you'll have goals. En route to achieving these goals, you'll find haters. Take it from me, people can be brutal. Sure, you can ignore these comments – out of sight, out of mind. But, it's better if you don't.
Listen to your haters, deliberately, every word. Painstakingly. Embrace them. Why? Because it will infuriate you. It will likely irritate you to the point where you find yourself awake, with bloodshot eyes, at 4 am, thinking: "How the f*ck am I going to make all these people eat their words?"
There's a good chance that by the time you finally get to sleep, and do it all again tomorrow, you’ll have an entirely new batch of haters. That’s just how it goes. Hate has the tendency to multiply like bacteria. So get used to it.
Don’t run from it, I promise that you won’t be able to hide.
Everyone has haters. I’m sure there are circles of people who stand around bashing "The Shawshank Redemption" as the biggest smoldering piece of sexist-American-cinema-bullsh*t.
It doesn’t mean they’re right. It's just one set of opinions, from people who probably won't hold an important place in your life.
If you don’t have haters, you’re probably not doing anything – at least not anything all that well. Hate follows success like a shadow – always looking to cast some shade. So, take a deep breath and accept it.
It’s easier said than done though, the whole “accepting” your haters thing. Especially when they’re throwing jabs like Ali. The thing is, the extent of their impact on you will lie solely in your hands. If you let them discourage your will, you’ll find yourself like Liston – defeated.
If you choose to harness that hate, and direct it towards progression, you’ll find yourself inspired. Never underestimate your own ability – others will do that for you – your job is to prove that ability.
When you find yourself some haters, keep them close. Keep them close to motivate you from the start, and keep them close so they can watch you flex once you make it.
Here are the 5 reasons to embrace your haters, and have them become your motivation:
5. Most of the times, they're just jealous.
If someone is hating on you, there’s a good chance they’re jealous – in some way, shape or form. Haters are often simple-minded. When simple-minded people see others shining, but can’t get their own feet off the ground, their next mission is to steal that light.
"You have it, I want it, I hate you for having it." Hater rule "nombre uno," to quote Frank White.
That’s what people do when they can’t empower themselves, they look to detract from others.
Recognize this and be flattered. People hate threats. That’s why established rappers “beef” with up-and-comers with as much frequency as saying “turn up my headphones” at the start of a track.
Before letting a hater knock you off your path, stop and think. Be confident in what you do, and ask yourself, “would this person trade places with me, right now?”
If, chances are, he would – consider that form of hate as a compliment.
4. But, a lot of times, they're right.
Other times, the hate you’re dealing with may very well be justifiable. Maybe you’re just starting a new job, and are still learning the ropes. Or trying to take whatever you’re doing to that next level. Maybe you’re experimenting with your own personal style.
Be real. You’re bound to slip and fall, even after achieving one level of success. This isn’t necessarily failure, but learning. As you’ve probably been told by now, you learn from mistakes.
Although others may see mistakes as a perfect window to voice their opinions. Keep in mind, while mistakes provide perfect windows for hate, these windows open and close. Mistakes are temporary, they can be fixed
Try and see the silver lining in criticism. Hate can often ruin days, and you know something – that’s fine. As long as, tomorrow, you respond.
Accept hate... because you damn sure can’t avoid it, and listen to it. While it may not be exactly what you want to hear in the moment, adhering to it might better you in the long run. Improvement is necessary to success, and “needs” should always prioritize before “wants.”
3. They always should light a fire under your ass
Remember that scene from “White Men Can’t Jump” when Billy Hoyle (Woody Harrelson) is busting Sidney Deane’s (Wesley Snipes) balls before they play a crucial basketball game.
Deane asks him what he’s doing, and Hoyle replies something along the lines of “annoying you. I assume you play better when you’re mad.”
Learn to “play better when you’re mad,” and use haters as fuel. When someone tells you “you’ll never make it,” make it twice – and then thank him after, for providing the motivation.
Receiving criticism, even from a bonafide hater, will provoke a pair of potential responses: You’ll either bounce back or bounce backwards. Really, that decision is up to you.
2. They force a response.
So bounce back. Like I said earlier, it’s fine to let criticism get to you, – from the onset – as long as you respond tomorrow. I was deliberate in my choice of wording.
Never react to haters, respond. Reactions are emotion based, and emotions can be irrational. Emotions are also ill-defined.
Responses, on the other hand, are planned. They’re formulated. They bear a meaning. Reactions are just impulses, and impulses are never well-thought, and are rarely practical.
1. They'll soon become your prey.
There’s no better feeling than defying the odds. Even if these “odds” were the words of some hater. In that case, there’s no better feeling than defying the words of a hater. In fact, I like the ring of that better.
Embrace your haters, so that down the road, you can say “I told ya so.”
Even if it’s figuratively speaking, and you never actually utter those words. Prove them wrong, but strive to empower yourself, while doing so – not victimize others. Trust me, seeing your success will leave them victim enough.
On to the next ones.
Photo Courtesy: We Heart It