How to Handle Haters
I felt compelled to write this after my morning tea today because intuitively I felt like it might just get in the hands of someone who needed to read it. Perhaps someone who is struggling from feeling unsupported in their efforts or someone who could use a few pointers on how to handle haters. It might be from a person you know, or maybe someone you have never met. You may have even felt attacked. Either way, it can be very challenging when something like this happens. However, it can also be a beautiful opportunity for growth.
Just a few days ago I was hit with one of these “growth opportunities.” I don’t think we ever get used to being unsupported, but we can, with practice, get better at turning the situation into something more positive.
You might have had a friend, a boss, a partner or even someone you don’t really know take offense to something you did and lash out. It can be completely unjustified in your opinion but for whatever reason the person felt the need to do this. In response to this we can react and lash back or defend ourselves. Naturally, that usually comes with a slew of frustration and negativity. It generally doesn’t solve anything and can make things much worse. It may give you a brief feeling of relief but that never lasts. Rather than do that what would happen if you took a different path. Try this:
First, remind yourself you do not walk in others’ shoes. You have no idea from where they are really coming. There are likely things in their life that you have no idea about. While you might be the target, the person could have just been in a very bad place and you were the unfortunate recipient.
Second, remember that life is a mirror. It is never about you. Generally, when we take strong offense to others it’s because they are reflecting something we don’t want to see in ourselves. Remembering this gets me every time. I immediately release my frustration and gently remind myself of this thought. It’s not about me.
Third, use the opportunity to send love. You’ve heard Martin Luther King Juniors quote, “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.” There is so much truth to that statement. This is your opportunity to be that light. My way of sending light in situations like this is simple. I take 10 minutes to meditate and imagine the person from whom I feel unsupported. I think of light radiating off me and engulfing them. It’s so shiny and beautiful and it warms them. I imagine them having success in all they do, and living peaceful and purposeful lives. When I open my eyes I always feel calmer, happier and more at peace with the situation.
I hope that maybe you will keep this in mind when situations like this crop up for you. When you are feeling unsupportive, attacked or hurt remind yourself of these steps. There is only love and fear. Responding with compassion changes everything, maybe not immediately, but if we all did that every time we faced a situation like this the world would be a better place.
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