And they’ll be loud sometimes. For real. They’ll get inside your head and make you think you should just be quiet.
I write personal development for adventurous people. I also write about things I believe in, including social & racial justice. This grinds a lot of gears for some folks. It’s political. Well, whoop dee doo– I’m over posting neutral content. I’m over seeing it. I’m over the idea that we should try to appeal to a wide audience. Over. It.
Having an opinion based on your values is way more important than trying to get people to like you.
There was a time when I took everything personally. I can’t anymore.
When you exist on the internet, the one negative comment you get (out of however many) will be the one that sticks, I promise. It’ll be the one you zero in on– the one you let define you. But you can’t let it stick. It’s not personal.
Haters come with the territory when you say anything at all that takes a side. Giving enough of a fuck to take a stand is worth it. It’s not really about you, it’s about a bigger picture, so release yourself from having to take everything as a personal attack. Choosing to stand up for anything says far more about the strength of your character than a few (or even a few hundred) negative comments.
I wear my values boldly because I believe that’s how you get shit done. Anyone can tell me that my values or beliefs are wrong, but that doesn’t mean they are right in their accusations.
You do not exist to make other people feel comfortable. Your actions speak to your priorities. What do you care about, and are you speaking up about it? Standing up? Showing up? When you decide to do so, I’m on your team.
I have been called many names on the internet– some that I am not even comfortable repeating. But it’s the internet. Is anyone surprised?
Getting hated on means I had something provocative to say in the first place. Many agree, some will not. It is hard to have a peaceful conversation with someone who is determined to bring you down. So if that isn’t going to happen, let it go.
When you live in your truth, people will disagree with you loudly and rudely, online and in person. You cannot let this dampen your spirit or dim your light. More people need your ideas, your vision, and your love more than you will ever know.
We have to give a fuck about things that matter, and we’re always going to get hate for it from someone, somewhere.
And I guarantee that amidst any negativity, there will be a day when you will get an email or comment that simply says, “Thank you for speaking up.”
It will be the only reminder you need that now is not the time to be silent.
Photo snapped by Adaeze Azubuike.