So I had to respond as I loved this article Clay, but took me a hot minute, because I had to break out my Brené Brown book so I could get my thoughts right and want to hear your response. I haven’t blocked anyone on Medium yet, even though I should. I guess part of it is that one thing Brené points out in Daring Greatly is that online trolls and people who want to crap all over your ideas are “not egomaniacs who take pleasure in cutting down other people; in fact, they were constantly harder on themselves than they were on other people. So their mean-spiritedness wasn’t only directed outward, even if they admitted that they often used it to lessen their own self-doubt.” She goes on to say that her research participants used “criticism and cynicism to protect themselves from vulnerability.”
That being said, I wonder how many people actually care for the haters enough to engage gently even when they’re harsh? Maybe they need someone to show them compassion? I’m conflicted because she goes on to say:
“When we stop caring about what people think, we lose our capacity for connection. When we become defined by what people think, we lose our willingness to be vulnerable. If we dismiss all the criticism, we lose out on important feedback, but if we subject ourselves to the hatefulness, our spirits gets crushed. It’s a tightrope, shame resilience is the balance bar, and the safety net below is the one or two people in our lives who can help us reality-check the criticism and cynicism.”
She concludes with a quote from a friend of hers who says, “Don’t try and win over the haters, you’re not the jackass whisperer.”
So…..I just don’t know. Sometimes I’m like “BLOCK,” but then I think, “I bet this person already has a lot of people hating them and probably hates themself. Why should I be one more?”
Would love to hear your thoughts!