There is a popular phrase “Haters back off!” or similar, “Bring on the Arrows.”  I see it everywhere, and I get it. I totally get it that the idea behind those words are “Don’t let those people who don’t agree with you or who don’t understand you drag you down.” YES! That’s powerful!  Yet, to me it seems to focus more on negative aspects–being attacked or “hated”–than it does on owning your power.

In my experience, whenever I give any attention to that kind of negative energy, I’m giving that negativity a portion of my power. The intention behind the phrase might be one of motivation or empowerment, but I’d prefer not to lose some of my power to the idea that somebody is hating on me or to the chance that there might be people that are wanting to drag me down.

I’m not saying that doesn’t exist. I know that hate happens. However, one of the things that I have really come to understand is that I never can really know anyone else’s intentions. It doesn’t matter what it seems that somebody else must be thinking or feeling or imagining or planning because I can’t read somebody else’s mind–even if I feel like I know the other person well. In fact, other people can’t even really describe to me what they’re thinking or feeling with 100% accuracy because I can’t see the images they see in their mind or feel the feelings they feel in their body when they describe it. There is no real way to know somebody else’s line of consciousness or their stream of thought. So anything--A.N.Y.T.H.I.N.G.–that I think or that I believe about my past or my present are in a lot of ways made up by me. So why does it benefit me to focus on the idea that anybody is trying to attack me, even if they are?

Here’s my way of looking at it.

I just know that my number one hater is myself–not my real self, but my imposter self. All of the wiring that I’ve developed throughout my life span , all of the negative messages that I’ve fed to my subconscious mind, have become my “Negative Nellie,”–my number one hater;  So, my number one focus is to quiet that voice and to strengthen the voice inside of me that represents the truth of who I am.  I love to look at other people not as having an intention to hurt me but as doing the best they can with what they have. I know that I wouldn’t want anyone to consider me as a hater, because I don’t hate on people, and I honestly believe (again, I know there are exceptions to every rule) it’s not my job to judge whether or not someone has bad intentions toward me, but rather to nurture the good in myself and to look for the good in others.

I’m not saying I don’t get my feelings hurt sometimes, because I do. I’m not saying that every once and a while I don’t get upset and wonder why some people act the way they do. However, when I stop and take a minute and remember that other people are just like I am, I recognize that chances are, they are probably being attacked by their own worst hater inside their own mind. I remember that oftentimes people are so busy focusing on themselves that they don’t have any room or energy to think hateful things about me. I get to choose to take their words or their actions as an act against me–or NOT!

So rather than the arrows people may be shooting at me, or rather than the “haters,” I like to focus on being my best self and seeing the best in other people. It just feels so much better!! It makes me feel like I have a team of people who are like me and who understand me instead of feeling like I need to hide or need to lash out at anybody in any way. That energy drags me down. It doesn’t help.

So those are my thoughts… Instead of “haters gonna hate” why do I even have to have haters? I would rather focus on that part of me that believes in me and focus on helping that side be louder and stronger than my negative critic. I know I have God on my side. I have a lot of friends, I have family, mentors, coaches– people like that to rally around me. I like to surround myself with people who lift and support me– whether that’s a book, an audio, or in-the-flesh people. With so many supporters, the haters (if there are any) will fade away.

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