We all know pretty well by now that we don’t live in a perfect world. People can be harsh, cruel, and mean-spirited at times – what we call haters. It’s not the majority, but it can certainly seem like the loudest group is the negative group at times. As an influencer, it is probably one of the most challenging aspects of putting your thoughts, pictures, and life out there for the world to see. There’s an open vulnerability that you give out through social media, and not everyone is going to love you. You need to know that now.
For the most part, people love bringing each other up, spreading love and positivity, and yet, for many of us, the easiest ones to focus on are the haters and the trolls leaving cruel comments and hurtful feedback, whether it comes from a place of envy or jealousy or a simple disagreement in taste. When you accept that these are an inevitable part of having a social media presence, you can also accept that there are right and wrong ways to handle the negativity.
Don’t Fight Fire with Fire
What you don’t want to do is bring yourself down to their level. You should be focusing on positivity and good vibes, and it’s crucial to not bring yourself down to their level. This not only brings you into a negative mind space, but it encourages the trolls to feed off that negativity and keep going at you. Even worse, it shows a side that your followers are likely not going to enjoy seeing. They want to see you as someone to aspire to, and while we might find momentary satisfaction with a quick, witty retort to some harsh comment, it can really hurt your image. Stay above it and know that it’s a part of the life.
Focus on the Good
You can’t do this job without having some thick skin. If you’re too susceptible to the thoughts and opinions of others, your social media presence can quickly start to wear you down and keep you down instead of doing just the opposite. There is going to be more positivity than negativity on your page and in your comments, and it’s important that you focus on that. As long as you’re not facing a barrage of hatred, it means you’re doing something right. Always look for the good, but don’t necessarily ignore the bad.
Kill ‘em with Kindness
If we’ve learned anything from the hatred of trolls and their cruel comments spreading on the web, it’s that they want to bring you down and they want you to engage them with anger so they can keep feeding their own negativity; it’s what they live off of, unfortunately. At this point, you’ve got two options: ignore their comments or return their cruelty with love and positivity. Avoid deleting negativity – but you sure can block someone who is disrespectful – , because it shows you can’t handle what’s coming your way, and because it’s also an opportunity to let your positive followers see your own strength. At the same time, fighting cruel comments with comments that show pity, sympathy, concern, or love can show a good side of you that your positive followers will adore and respect. On some rare occasions, it’s even a way to turn a hater into a fan! For the most part, they’ll simply retreat back into the internet, sad they couldn’t get you upset, but that’s simply a win for you.
There are no sure-things or blanket fixes when it comes to Instagram, and until we’ve simply got a better world, you’re not going to escape the occasional hater, but what does matter and what is in your control is how you handle it. Stay positive, stay good, and stay focused on your image and your brand and good things will be sure to follow.
Have you encountered any haters on social media? How did you deal with the situation? Share below!