Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Sticks and Stones: How to Deal with Negative Comments

Criticism has never come easy for me.  Even when it's constructive, I just don't like being told I am wrong in any fashion.  

There are times when I believe judgement is a good thing.  When someone who cares about your well being offers a true sense of their advice that will make you a better person for it, then I step back and try to appreciate it.  

But when someone personally attacks you and your lifestyle without having valid justification or knowledge of your situation, that is when I think it's crossing the line.  

If you blog, I'm sure you are not unknown to the ever so dreaded harsh commenter.  You have to expect it when you place your life on an open platform for others to judge.  It's not necessarily the fact as to whether you receive the negative remarks, but how you deal with it that really matters. 


1/4 C Natures Path Flax Plus Red Berry, 1/4 C Natures Path Flax Plus Flakes, Berries, Almond Butter Granola

Last night, I encountered a very unpleasant remark from a reader….

You can see the whole comment thread in last night's post, but here is a small excerpt from the conversation.

 "I know you have disordered eating habits and you are a bad role model for children. I hate to say this but I don't think you should blog at the healthy eating summit as you are an imperfect example of what a healthy person is."
Needless to say, I was upset.

I thought about deleting the comment, but then I realized that if I just erased the criticism, that would not change how I felt or how this person viewed me.

I chose to respond.  Not because I thought I was better than this person, not because I was angry, not because I wanted to prove a point, but because I felt sorry.

I felt sorry that this person felt the need to personally attack my lifestyle, my choices, and my overall beliefs.  I wanted to let them know that I was sorry that they felt that way but their perception was entirely misjudged.

Toly asked me why I didn't delete it and I told him that if I did, I would not be showing my true self.  I know there are many things we keep personal on the blog, and rightfully so, but there is also a level of reality that people have grown to appreciate.

Sure I blog about healthy living, my crazy love for fitness, and show you most the food I consume each day, but I also expect you all to know that I am not perfect.  I make mistakes, I get overwhelmed, I don't always portray the perfection of health, but I'm happy.  I'm happy with myself, I'm happy with what I've overcome, and I'm happy with the purpose of my life and what I am doing with it.

LOVE the new La Croix Coconut Sparking Water 

Leftover Salmon over Strawberry Wheat Berry Salad 

You are all entitled to disagree with anything I say or do.  I have no problem with that.  I never intended to seek approval or acceptance.

Tofu Pad Thai

Because as I said before, I'm happy.  And if I can share any of that happiness and inspiration with just one other person, than my reasoning for writing are completely justified.  

I will always stay true to myself. So if you ever find someone bullying you for the person you are, don't ever let them win.  Because when it comes down to it, the only judgement that really matters is our own because it's the only one strong enough to actually make us do something about it. 

How do you deal with negative comments or remarks?  Do you ignore them or do you defend your dignity?