Haters Are A Signal

haters are a signal

We have all heard someone say “I don’t care what anyone thinks.”

For years, I admired those folks.  Wow.  What freedom it must be to really not care what anyone thinks!  That would be amazing.  I know that, despite my best efforts, I do care.  I really want people to like me and respect me.  And if I am being honest, criticism often hits me too hard.

But as I have gotten older, I have realized something else.  Those people who say they “don’t care what anyone thinks” actually do care.  Sometimes they even care more.

And here’s another thing I have realized.  That’s okay.

Most of us have a desire to be liked or respected.  Acknowledging that is important.  The challenge is, that most people take that “desire” to be liked and turn that into a “need.”  When you need to be liked, you often have to confirm your ideas in order to fit in.  You can’t push too hard.  By pushing too hard against what “most people think” you will create people that don’t like you.

And if you NEED to fit in, that might be too big a risk.

For many people, it’s easier just to conform.

This morning I am reminded of the advice that Seth Godin gave me.

He was kind enough to appear on my show Delivering #MarketingJoy and I asked him what to do when the haters show up.

And he said, “If the haters are not showing up, you are not pushing hard enough.”

His point was simple.  If you are creating something new, then some people will not like it.  (That’s okay.  It’s not for them).  And when those people run up against your new idea, your new company, or your new passion project, they might criticize you.  They probably will!  So if you have not received ANY pushback, then you might not have told enough people.  You haven’t pushed out the idea enough.

Instead of leaning away from that criticism, maybe it’s better to lean in.  It might be better to see these “haters” as a signal that you are on the right track.

They show you that you have something new…and worth remarking on!

Here’s to pushing the boundaries today.

Kirby Hasseman is the CEO of Hasseman Marketing.  Get a copy of his best-selling book “The Give First Economy” for FREE here.  

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