Stuart Young, London, UK
The other day I posted on How To Ignore Negative Comments and I think it deserves further discussion.
Firstly, I think it would be a good idea to start with the premise that the negative comments are ungrounded, ie: not deserved.
(Of course if you being a total idiot about something expect some negative comments, listen to them, and stop being an idiot.) 🙂
So, what if they are ungrounded?
These can come from all quarters; what I refer to as the 3 Fs of Influence – Friend, Foe and Family. Some are well meaning, whereas some are just being mean.
Here are 5 questions to consider that can put you in the right Mindset to tackle them head on:
- Are they true and does that even matter?
- Do they reflect who you are?
- Do they spur you on or deflate you?
- How much do you value the opinion of the commenter?
- How determined to continue are you?
Let’s take a look at them one at a time…
1. Are they true and does that even matter? – If someone tells you that you’re not a very good writer should that stop you from writing? Of course not. You can either ignore it and remind yourself that there have been many successful writers that weren’t actually very good technically. Or, you can use the comment to motivate yourself to learn more about writing so that you can improve. Either way – continue writing.
2. Do they reflect who you are? – Taking the first example above, does the fact that you might not be a very competent writer detract from you being a writer? Of course not, no more than being an objectively poor painter does not mean you are not a painter. You are whatever you desire to be and no opinion from anyone else alters that.
3. Do they spur you on or deflate you? – This is nearing the crux of the issue, if the negative comment spurs you on – motivates you, then don’t ignore it. In fact, welcome comments of this nature. If on the other hand the comments deflate you, demotivate you, then applying a process like this one to determine what validity they have, this will help you see that other’s opinions have no baring on your ambitions and dreams. Many people told Edison to quit searching for a commercially viable lightbulb – but he didn’t quit, thankfully.
4. How much do you value the opinion of the commenter? – A good teacher will encourage you down your own chosen path. They might offer advice on potential course corrections along the way – in order to be helpful. A bad teacher will encourage you to pursue something based on their beliefs about what you should do. Decide how much value you put on the commenter’s comments and why. Are they trying to help you or steer you to a destination of their choice. As with good parenting, the role of a parent is to give their children the best environment they possibly can in which to make their own choices. Then let them.
5. How determined to continue are you? – This is the deciding factor on whether you continue with an endeavour or not. If you are easily swayed away from an activity ask yourself if it’s really what you wanted. If it wasn’t, then maybe the negative comment was actually useful advice. If not, if you feel an urge to continue, then do just that.
“The problem isn’t the problem. The problem is the way you are thinking about the problem.” ~ Dan Sullivan
The way we think determines every outcome in our life. If you want to master your own Mindset – learn how here: CLICK HERE